Local News

Group Pursuing New Ways to Fund N.C. 540

Posted November 9, 2007

— Plans to toll N.C. 540 are moving forward, and construction could be under way by this time next year.

Even if the state legislature decides not to help fund the multi-million dollar project, the group that's pushing for the road has a new idea.

David Joyner, executive director of the North Carolina Turnpike Authority, said it’s his job to help find the money to finish the project.

“Well, if we don’t, I don’t know how we finance it otherwise,” he said.

If the state doesn’t pay the $20 million a year needed to complete the remaining 18 miles, Joyner said he has another idea. The Turnpike Authority has met with 11 private investment firms – most recently, Goldman Sachs earlier this week.

But there’s a major drawback to going with an investment firm.

“The tolls won’t be any higher probably, but you’ll pay for it over a longer period of time,” Joyner said.

That means the project would cost a lot more money.

“That is the worst case scenario, but it might happen if the legislature doesn’t step up,” said House Minority Leader Rep. Paul Stam (R), Wake County.

James Farrington drives on N.C. 540 every day.

“Whether its taxes or something else, [they’re going to] get it one way or the other,” he said.

Joyner said the toll will cost about 12 cents a mile. Once the debt on the project is paid off, the tolls will be taken down, as is required by state law.


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  • Timbo Nov 11, 2007

    Why do we need this road so fast? Oh, the builders, developers and folks who profit on real estate sales want it. Oh, so we the taxpayers are getting doubly gouged to put money in the pockets of people who don't even live here.

    BTW, Joyner's job is to do everyone in NC a favor and fall on his sword. He's trying to justify his existence and should be fired/released.

    I don't want to live in SOUTH JERSEY. NC GOV needs to is just lining their and their friends pockets at our expense.

  • richard2 Nov 11, 2007

    NO toll roads! What part of NO don't you understand?

  • SteamTrain Nov 10, 2007

    Looks like price gouging to me. They want to charge $1 to $1.50 for the 18 mile section. The Garden State Pkwy in NJ charges an average of ~35c for each 15 miles! I'll find a way to bypass this ripoff...should it come to pass.

  • turnpike420 Nov 10, 2007

    BTW, you want more names... David Joyner is the only person you ever really hear about in these articles.

    NAMES: Power brokers involved in the bad politics in NC dealing with transportation: Gov. Easley, Tony Rand, Mark Bassnight (sp?) and Calvin Liggett. Let's call these people out and see just how deep the rabbit hole goes with them.

  • turnpike420 Nov 10, 2007

    Tolls are bad enough, but private investors are BAD! What does an investor want? Return On Investment. That translates directly into higher tolls for longer. Examples in the Indiana area show private investors have contracts to collect tolls for 75 and 99 YEARS on 2 roads in that area. This is outrageous. Also allowing private investors takes public control away from public infrastructure. DO NOT allow this to happen.

    Please support No Tolls on 540 (http://www.notollson540.org) and our effort to keep the NCTA away from 540. Visit the site to sign our online petition.

  • lgboro Nov 10, 2007

    Maybe stop the abuse and waste of the current system. Replace the states corrupt politicians (that consist of all of them) with new ones who don't have a family or friends and especially corporate contributors.

  • pbjbeach Nov 10, 2007

    This whole plan is ultimately arising out of privatization of the entire ncdot road system so as to ultimately turn over the entire ncdot to some big prvate investment bank or insurance company an allowed them to toll the roads of north carolina for profits for their company's where that the taxpayers of this state has more than paid for over the last past 50-75 yrs an we used to known as the good roads state but that is no longer the case. just say that investment banks were allowed to take over our road system what happens when they start to falling to pieces an the maintenance cost soars then they will be wanting to return them to the taxpayer of this state again for the taxpayer to fund the repair cost. please people look ahed to the future this time an stand up to the people on jones street an do not allow this to happen thank you

  • Nancy Nov 10, 2007

    "but it looks more like a finger painting done by 5 yeas olds :)"

    That's a succinct way of putting it!

  • delete meee now Nov 10, 2007

    Just what we need...more fees and taxes...

  • Thornes Nov 10, 2007

    nancy, lol

    Yeah I see the big picture, lol but it looks more like a finger painting done by 5 yeas olds :)