A Pennsylvania state representative believes the idea of road
privatization might be one way to improve the state’s highway system and reduce
taxpayer maintenance costs.
Rep. Richard Geist, R-Blair, chairman of the House Transportation
Committee, told “Land Line Now” that public-private partnerships for roads have
worked in Europe and are becoming increasingly popular among lawmakers in the U.S.
Pennsylvania, like most states, is cash-strapped for
“Right now we do $1.6 billion a year in new construction,” Geist said.
“The interstate restoration program on the capacity problem alone is about $6
billion a year for five years. That will give you an idea how much the needs
really are there, just on the commerce side, so we have to take a very serious
look at funding over the next 20 years in Pennsylvania.”
Public-private partnerships, such as the one being considered by
lawmakers for the Indiana Toll Road, might involve PennDOT signing over the
operation and maintenance of toll roads to private entities, or inking
agreements for new roads.
– By Land Line staff