Tolling Authority part of special session


Today Governor Beshear added tolling authority legislation to the agenda for next week's special session. If the legislation locks in the current two-bridge solution, it means that the project can't be changed in any significant way and therefore we cannot consider a better, less expensive alternative.

According to both the Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) and the State's recent study, the East End Bridge provides more "cross-river mobility" and better "System wide performance" than the Downtown Bridge portion of the project which costs more than twice as much. That, and according to our poll, the East Bridge is supported over the Downtown Bridge by more than 2 to 1 margin by Jefferson County residents.

But the East End Bridge has been delayed by the "weight" of the downtown portion of the project for more than a decade. Regrettably, the delays will likely continue if a tolling authority is passed and the project is locked together. For some, this has been the strategy all along. We need to prioritize the East End Bridge and move Louisville forward.



June 12, 2009

To Tyler Allen and JC Stites

Just saw your "bad news" notice of 06/ii/09 7:30pm -at www.8664.0rg.

I hope that I don't sound too critical, but should you two not mobilize us to [1] testify at special session, and [2] have meeting on the implications of this "bad news?"

Point also to be made is that I had to seek your response by going to, while I feel that you needed to alert the membership by a special email.

Tyler and I briefly met at the Glass Works, [evening of Barry Barker's talk]. Tyler sted that he and may be moving to accept a "good tolling system," as opposed to a bad one.

This is reason to meet.

David E. Blank
(502) 452 -1081

This is the message we need to put out there, forcefully...

Tolls are patently unfair as...

1) Why does this region have to shoulder all the costs, when the whole of Kentucky benefits from the enhanced commerce the East End Bridge will bring?

2) Why do the good people of Southern Indiana have to bear the biggest brunt of the tolls, whether they hold jobs in Kentucky or they are Hoosier business owners who face reduced business because fewer Kentuckians will choose to cross the river?

Kentucky's funding mechanism for the East End Bridge (we don't need the Downtown Bridge, btw) should come from a base that reaches from all of Kentucky.

From today's LEO -

"Tucked at the bottom of the second-to-last page of the bill is a salacious little bit of legalese, a provision that binds the tolling authority to the bridges project precisely as it is now established. This could ward off any further challengers to the project, like 8664, an alternative citizen-driven movement that has picked up significant support over the last few years. It might also be included as a way to limit the authority’s authority — that is, they can’t just go changing things because they can."

Should we work to have the senate strip out this language?

I started a topic on Louisville History & Issues about contacting our state senators to modify the highly inflexible language before it's passed:

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  • Steve Magruder: From today's LEO - "Tucked at the bottom of read more
  • Steve Magruder: This is the message we need to put out there, read more
  • David E. Blank: June 12, 2009 To Tyler Allen and JC Stites Just read more