Thursday, June 30, 2005

Ask not to whom the toll goes...

Congress is currently looking to set up a procedure to encourage privately owned toll roads. The idea is that they'll pass legislature that would allow private comanies to raise up to $15 billion for highway projects using tax-exempt bonds.

When I first read this, I was a little disturbed. After all, the government usually is responsible for building and maintaining roads. The Federal government works the interstate highway system (I think), the states do the state highways, and the counties and cities do their roads.

But, the article explains that some smaller states already do this, as a means of easing their taxes and keep the pressure off the budgets (my interpretation). I can see pros to this, as it would ease taxpayer costs across the board; but it would burden those who use the roads most often.

Probably the biggest argument against it is that the Federal government is a non-profit organization, whereas the private companies would have to stay in business. This could potentially mean a price inflation that we wouldn't otherwise see, but I think in the end, it would cost us less that people fear.

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