Monday, June 29, 2009

Legislators: "Vote NO on CDAs and NO to the Revolving Fund that raids gas taxes and public pension funds for risky toll roads!"

Help us STOP foreign-owned toll roads = $13 a DAY in NEW taxes!

Public pension funds at risk, too!


Written by Terri Hall
Texans Uniting for Reform and Freedom
Copyright 2009

Texans need to DEFEAT CDAs & protect public pension funds this week!

Call your STATE legislators in Austin today and tell them to vote NO on CDAs and NO to the Revolving Fund that raids gas taxes and public pension funds for risky toll roads!

Find out who represents you here.

You may also contact each representative by calling the Capitol switchboard: (512) 463-4630.

CDAs mean foreign corporations have the power to control EVERY MILE WE DRIVE for a half century at a time!

So the Legislature didn't pass bills to end gas tax diversions, restrain toll taxation for every new lane of highway, prevent the conversion of FREEways to tollways, finally repeal the Trans Texas Corridor or pass a STRONG eminent domain bill, but they're spending millions for a special session to sell-out Texans to benefit private road lobbyists drinking from the public trough!

These private toll contracts, called Comprehensive Development Agreements or CDAS, are sweetheart deals that will charge the traveling public 75 cents a mile to use our PUBLIC roadways. That's $13 bucks a DAY and more than $3,000 a year PER COMMUTER on average.

CDAs also eat-up virtually ALL of our available gas taxes and other highway funds to prop-up toll projects that aren't even toll viable (can't work without subsidizing them). Read about the deals in North Texas that use $1 billion dollars of EVERYONE's gas taxes and public funds, but you won't be able to use it without paying $13 a DAY in homage to Spain here.

They tell us the private operators are bringing all the money to the table so it's okay to sell-out the taxpayers in sweetheart deals (like non-compete agreements that prohibit ANY new lanes or NEW roads from being built that would "compete" with the private operators toll cash cow as a way to GUARANTEE congestion on free roads). But the FACT is our GAS TAXES and other PUBLIC money are going into these deals, in some cases more public cash than private. CDAs also mean massive multi-generational DEBT!

Toll authority to raise toll rates 32% because BURIED in debt it can't repay
Read about it here.

This is an ALL-OUT ASSAULT on our freedom to travel!

For more info on how just how bad these private toll contracts are for the taxpayers, read more here.

SB 1 to raid public employee pension funds & teacher retirement funds

In another bill for the special session, SB 1, lawmakers resurrect Sen. John Carona's SB 1350 that will set-up a Transportation Bank as a private corporation (controlled by the Governor's political appointees, the Texas Transportation Commission) in order to raid teacher retirement funds and public employee pension funds to invest in these risky toll road schemes that are failing all over the country.

"The revolving fund could provide a vehicle for the Texas Retirement System and Employee Retirement System to invest in state infrastructure, a policy (Sen. Steve) Ogden supports." - Texas Monthly, April 28, 2009

This idea is designed to set-up a "Revolving Fund" to finance toll projects they can't find private investors to bankroll. The Revolving Fund is another way to divert MORE gas taxes to toll roads (gas tax can be deposited into the Revolving Fund and recycled to fund toll roads that aren't viable/100% self-sustaining).

Take action right away (see URGENT action item above) to protect the integrity of public employee retirement funds.

Connecting the dots...
Perry, Dewhurst backroom deal to raid funds.

Texas Monthly calls raiding pension funds "irresponsible" and "immoral" here.

© 2009 TURF:

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