Wednesday, 16 April 2014 09:48

Horse's Mouth for April 16, 2014

Written by  Staff

“The federal government is cash strapped, and the states are the ones being innovative. Moving these kinds of projects into the private sector is the way to go.”
— Emily Goff of the Heritage Foundation, one of the nation’s most influential conservative think tanks.

“The private sector is not going to fund a risky project. Whereas, the federal government is perfectly willing to do it, and it’s the taxpayer who ends up paying for it. ... If not enough money comes in to cover the costs (through the long-term collection of tolls), it would be the contractor who would have to absorb the losses, not the taxpayers.”
— Emily Goff.

“In an abundance of caution, we use the word ‘apparent’ because, at this time, they are the bidder we will award the contract to, but not until we go through the reporting process with the Joint Legislative Transportation Oversight Committee, and we are preparing that report now.”
— North Carolina Department of Transportation Administrator of Technical Services Rodger Rochelle on the repeated use of the word “apparent” in a press release last week about the selection of a P3 consortium to widen I-77 with new high-occupancy toll lanes and replace several bridges.

“It’s understandable that folks want all the details revealed, but right now we are in a position to where we don’t want to do anything to jeopardize this attractive proposal.”
— Rochelle, on why specifics of the contract with Cintra Infraestructures are still being kept under wraps.

“The reason it seems this is happening all of a sudden is because of the state’s new STI, which is a reprioritization that is occurring as we speak with this project and others. The new draft TIP will come out in December, so we will know where this project really ranks.”
— Cornelius Assistant Town Manager Andrew Grant during an open house workshop last week regarding widening West Catawba Avenue from Jetton Road to Sam Furr Road.

“I look at this as a positive sign that DOT sees this as an important project for them and for the community. Otherwise, they wouldn’t be spending money to update the document.”
— Andrew Grant.

“It’s regularly used, we use it whenever we can. In fact, its use is encouraged by the Federal Highway Administration.”
— North Carolina Department of Transportation spokesman Steve Abbott on the nearly 20,000 tons of coal ash used in construction of roads and bridges statewide.

“The DOT uses 20,000 tons, which is great, but we’re looking for more projects like the work at the airports and other infrastructure uses that could put millions of tons to beneficial use.”
— Duke Energy spokesperson Lisa Hoffman.

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