{{ AFP National Site
s

Stop the Columbia River Crossing Boondoggle

February 13, 2013

Your ACTION is needed! The Oregon State Legislature as decided to fast track the Columbia River Crossing despite the public outcry. Today HB 2800 has been scheduled for a public hearing this MONDAY, February 11 at the State Capitol Hearing Room F from 3pm until 9pm.

This boondoggle of a project meets none of our traffic congestion needs. Yet legislators have brought forward a bill that will fund this project which will have a huge impact on the State Highway Fund and all other need transportation dollars around the state. They are planning on selling bonds against our future Federal Transportation dollars taking Oregon dangerously back to our maximum bonding authority, despite other potential needs for bonding authority.  And on top of that, they are planning on making it a toll bridge.

The CRC boondoggle will:

  • HB 2800 imposes large debt service requirements on future motorists to pay for up-front bonds, and that money will simply cannibalize other highway/road projects everywhere else in the state
  • Introduces expensive tolls on I5 and push cost overruns to Oregon and Washington when toll revenue comes in below expectations.
  • It eliminates the potential for other transportation projects to be built, based on likely cost overruns that the state will have to backfill.
  • There is no contingency plan for revenue shortfalls or cost overruns!
  • The planning process for the CRC has been wrought with cronyism and process-rigging to exclude skeptics of its financial plan.
  • A forensic accountant has identified over $100M of pork stuffed into the CRC plan, for projects completely unrelated to the CRC!
  • The time of travel for commuters currently using buses but switching to the new light rail line between Portland and Vancouver will go up from 16 minutes to 36 minutes!!
  • The current CRC plan will not improve freight mobility.
  • Even the Coast Guard has said the current bridge plan is too low, therefore they cannot issue the necessary permits.
  • Since the state has been doing this very thing for most of the past decade (selling bonds to be paid off by gas tax money), ODOT is projecting that a large portion of gas tax money through 2020 and beyond will be lost to debt service anyway, so HB 2800 makes a bad situation worse.
  • The project, if built, will never work because the bridge would be like a big funnel, and south of the Columbia everything would come to a halt right near the Fremont bridge
  • Since the current bridge is structurally sound, it should be left standing, and at least 2 new bridges should be built (one to the west of I-5, and one out in Gresham)
  • There is no reason for Oregon taxpayers to spend one penny expanding TriMet’s service territory into another state. The light rail portion should be removed.
  • This is the largest mega-project boondoggle in Oregon history!

Take Action by: attending the bill hearing this Monday and sending emails and phone calls to the Committee members immediately

Senator Chris   Edwards 503-986-1707
Senator Fred   Girod 503-986-1709
Senator Rod   Monroe  503-986-1724
Representative   Kevin Cameron 503-986-1419
Representative   John Davis 503-986-1426
Representative   Margaret Doherty  503-986-1435
Representative   Chris Gorsek  503-986-1449
Representative   John Lively  503-986-1412
Representative   Caddy McKeown  503-986-1409
Representative   Nancy Nathanson 503-986-1413
Representative   Julie Parrish 503-986-1437

 

Like this post? Chip in $5 to AFP.

Join Our Fight

The road to economic freedom starts here.
Join a network of AFP activists in important issue battles across the country, get the inside scoop with breaking news updates and policy alerts, and be the first to hear about special events near your home.  Help us fight for a better tomorrow.  Together, we can work for lower taxes, less government spending, and greater economic freedom for everyone.

Your Information

[contact-form-7 id="544" title="Subscribe"] ×