Because the Tollway relies on user fees only for its operations, this summer’s near-shutdown of $2 billion in Illinois Department of Transportation projects had little impact on its maintenance or capital agenda. State lawmakers had reached a stalemate in budget negotiations but passed a stopgap bill to ensure road and highway construction continued. The news wasn’t so good for New Jersey this summer when Gov. Chris Christie shut down all non-essential state transportation projects after he and legislators could not come to an agreement on how to counterbalance the new 23-cent gas tax increase. Christie’s order shelved approximately $3.5 billion of projects and sent workers home during the busiest time of year — when many transportation workers earn the money that will get them through the idle winter months.
- The politics of infrastructure
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