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  • brassy Mar 25, 12:39 p.m.

    Remind me again what my tax dollars pay for?

  • babyblue1981 Mar 22, 7:45 p.m.

    "Federal benefits are funded by the feds. WE DO NOT PAY FOR THEM from state money. So we didn't borrow to pay them." - junkmail5

    Um...the last time I checked the FEDERAL Government makes NOTHING Of VALUE, they get their money from Citizens who live in States. Every dollar the Federal government STEALS, is less money that could be spent & should be spent in your local economy. So yes the States do pay...

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 6:54 p.m.

    We didn't have the money to pay NC unemployment benefits because the democrats cut the taxes three times when times were good - we came up short - they bought votes for a while.

    don't let the facts or the truth deter you from your mission!
    Nanc

    Uh, what?

    THOSE ARE THE FACTS I HAVE BEEN TELLING YOU.

    We borrowed to cover STATE unemployment.

    The normal 26 weeks.

    NOT extended.

    Not a single word in your quotes says we borrowed for EXTENDED benefits.

    In your huffington post it discussed the FEDERAL benefits that we did NOT borrow money for.

    They are TWO DIFFERENT PROGRAMS.

    Federal benefits are funded by the feds. WE DO NOT PAY FOR THEM from state money. So we didn't borrow to pay them.

    Why do you keep lying about these being the same thing?

  • Nancy Mar 22, 6:49 p.m.

    junkmail if you wish, you can read the whole article on Huffington Post but here's a little snippet that might upset you

    "The benefits lapsed because the state lost eligibility for the federal Extended Benefits program, which gives 20 weeks of benefits for long-term jobless who exhaust 79 weeks of combined state and federal benefits. The state lost its eligibility because its political leaders couldn't agree on a bill to realign its eligibility "trigger" with a new federal standard, implemented to allow states to keep the Extended Benefits program, that took effect in December."

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/03/bev-perdue-unemployment-benefits_n_871030.html

  • Nancy Mar 22, 6:46 p.m.

    junkmail, you just can't accept that Bev ran to the feds for borrowed money that we have to pay back to extend unemployment. We owe the feds, Bev made the deal to borrow the money.
    Here is where I got her quote: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2011/06/03/bev-perdue-unemployment-benefits_n_871030.html

    And from the same WRAL link posted previously is this

    "About 30 states borrowed money to cover their unemployment benefits, but North Carolina's bill is among the largest. The state must repay millions of dollars in interest on the loans by Sept. 30."

    We didn't have the money to pay NC unemployment benefits because the democrats cut the taxes three times when times were good - we came up short - they bought votes for a while.

    don't let the facts or the truth deter you from your mission!

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 6:30 p.m.

    NC has one of the highest gas taxes in America so the highways should be paved in gold!
    meeper

    #8 actually. We also have a lot of roads... more than most states do.

  • meeper Mar 22, 6:17 p.m.

    It's not tolls it's taxes. Tata needs to be truthful. It's another way to confiscate our wealth while calling it something else.
    NC has one of the highest gas taxes in America so the highways should be paved in gold!

  • remer54 Mar 22, 6:09 p.m.

    Its funny I have lived here all of my life and the roads have steadily gotten worse. To many state DMV employees and too high of salaries up the ladder. To much retirement money to them also. If not then why dont we have the money to take care of the roads.

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 5:54 p.m.

    Just to illustrate you're lying:

    Where the purdue quote comes from:

    http://www.wral.com/news/state/nccapitol/story/9680520/

    "federally funded benefits"

    Not state funded, federally funded.

    Now, the other story your last quote is from:

    http://www.wral.com/news/state/nccapitol/story/9154961/

    "The state Employment Security Commission had to borrow money from the U.S. Labor Department on several occasions to keep benefits checks flowing during the worst recession in decades"

    The STATE borrowed... to keep paying STATE benefits. The normal 26 weeks.

    The two are not related.

    If you're going to make things up that aren't true you'll need to be a little sneakier next time.

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 5:47 p.m.

    Perdue continued: "Today, I am issuing an executive order extending federal unemployment benefits "

    and then,

    "Raleigh, N.C. — The state owes the federal government almost $2.6 billion for jobless benefits paid over the past two years to unemployed North Carolina
    Nancy

    Why do you keep lying?

    Those are two UNRELATED statements.

    The executive order was because the GOP had blocked a routine bill, and a side-effect was cutting off the federal benefits. An attempt to hold unemployment benefits they weren't even PAYING for hostage to get the GOP budget past a veto

    BENEFITS THAT THE STATE DOES NOT PAY FOR.

    the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 requires 100% FEDERAL funding of extended benefits.

    Federal, not state.

    The money borrowed from 09 to 12 was to pay STATE benefits. The normal 26 weeks. Because we'd under-taxed businesses so long we didn't have enough reserve money.

  • Nancy Mar 22, 5:16 p.m.

    "Not true at all. ALL extended benefits were FEDERAL dollars we didn't borrow a cent for."

    you never stop spinning do you ;)

    Bev extended benefits for unemployment - we didn't have the money, we borrowed it from the feds

    ""For weeks, I have been trying to work with the Republican legislative leaders to get them to do the right thing: send me a clean bill to extend the unemployment benefits for 47,000 North Carolinians who have lost their jobs," Perdue said in a statement. "Instead, they have persistently attempted to use our unemployed workers as hostages by tying the extension of their benefits to my acceptance of budget bills that would inflict severe and unnecessary cuts to our schools and other essential programs."

    Perdue continued: "Today, I am issuing an executive order extending federal unemployment benefits "

    and then,

    "Raleigh, N.C. — The state owes the federal government almost $2.6 billion for jobless benefits paid over the past two years to unemployed North Carolina

  • WASP Mar 22, 4:56 p.m.

    Toll I-95. From VA to SC. Make those out of staters pay for using NC roads.

  • Bendal1 Mar 22, 3:25 p.m.

    Oh please; there was no conspiracy or corruption involved in the decision to use normal spending methods to build I-540 in North Raleigh, or to toll the southern half either for that matter. The traffic and the growth were on the north side of Raleigh; it made sense to build that half first, and the money was available to build it. No need to toll it at all.

    Then the southern half was needed, but rising construction and right of way costs meant the project(s) kept moving further and further out while politicians and administrators tried to find the money. Tolls were then proposed as a method of getting it built faster, and everyone thought that was a great idea because Wake County gets a road built 10 years faster than with gas tax funds.

    Don't want tolls? Then tell your politicians to raise the gas tax, both state and Federal.

  • bbobbitt Mar 22, 2:29 p.m.

    goldenosprey. Gas taxes should have paid for the entire outer loop, I agree. But they didn't. Any excuse someone can find to justify stuffing their pockets, they are going to do it. My point is, if you're going to have a toll road, you should toll the entire loop, not just a portion of it. I guess you think it's just pure luck that north raleigh got a free ride, and southern wake county has to pay a toll. There are many more folks in north raleigh that have contacts with low people in high places that can twist things their way. Typical.

  • hi_i_am_wade Mar 22, 1:56 p.m.

    "Toll state to state roads like 95. Tolling 540 was the dumbest move NC has made. We pay enough in fuel tax for the ones living here and now you have to pay more tax to use 540 that circles Raleigh. What's wrong is NC afraid to tax the people that travel through our state." -- pipcolt

    Translation: "Toll the roads I don't drive and that won't affect me. I don't care about the effect on other people." Well I do care. I frequently use I-95. A toll there affects me in a big way. And I am not an out-of-state driver. DO NOT TOLL I-95!!!!! I think toll roads should be on NEW roads only, that way you have a viable alternative.

  • pipcolt Mar 22, 1:46 p.m.

    Toll state to state roads like 95. Tolling 540 was the dumbest move NC has made. We pay enough in fuel tax for the ones living here and now you have to pay more tax to use 540 that circles Raleigh. What's wrong is NC afraid to tax the people that travel through our state.

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 1:45 p.m.

    And of course, we owe the feds over $2 billion for the borrowing we did to extend unemployment repeatedly- nancy

    Not true at all. ALL extended benefits were FEDERAL dollars we didn't borrow a cent for.

    Before the recent gutting of the program it was 26 weeks of state benefits. And had been for years and year and years.

    We owe them money because we under-taxed businesses for years and years and years when unemployment was low. So once it went up we didn't have enough to cover those 26 weeks for all the unemployed people.

    By ALL means blame that on the democrats who undertaxes the businesses.

    But you need to blame the republicans for refusing to fix it by TAXING THE BUSINESSES and instead those stole the money from future unemployed peoples benefits.

    (as well as cutting off the federal, no cost to the state, extended benefits by doing so)

  • Nancy Mar 22, 1:38 p.m.

    "Absolutely not true. The School Bus Plan was Tata's Baby, He lead the task force, he approved it, and he signed off on it."

    Don't know where you get your news, but even the N&O spelled out who was to blame back when it happened. But whatever, blame Tata, it doesn't change the facts.

    As to no money for roads, blame Bev, Easley and old GA controlled by the democrats who used DOT and education funding to balance their budgets routinely.

    And of course, we owe the feds over $2 billion for the borrowing we did to extend unemployment repeatedly. Bev left that bill on the table on her way out ...

  • pelosi-rulz Mar 22, 1:27 p.m.

    Toll every road... make everyone pay...

  • Raleigh Rocks 1 Mar 22, 1:15 p.m.

    Junkmind....lol

    Lets start here, Take a look, do ya agree with any of this?

    http://www.studentnewsdaily.com/conservative-vs-liberal-beliefs/

  • sczarnecki Mar 22, 12:57 p.m.

    Toll Roads should be placed at the state lines,to help pay for the roads when people travel in to the state,then the gas tax would not be near the price we pay now or eliminate the tax altogether.Chicgo has tolls that pay for the freeways been there for 40 years, This state has alot of trouble making up there minds on what to do,the more they talk about what there going to do,the further they get behind instead of action,and it will not stop people from moving in to this state they will never keep up with the population this state is kind of backwards compared to other states.Its a great state, but they better do some thing fast,try to get federal money,Stop coming after the people that live in this state for MONEY.

  • redjamison Mar 22, 12:43 p.m.

    I refuse to ever use a toll road in this state as long as everyone who legally owns a vehicle here also has to pay for annual inspections/registrations, one of the highest gasoline taxes in the country, and vehicle taxes.

    The addition of toll roads makes for some fine quadruple dippin' for your needlessly bloated transportation budget, Mr Tata.

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 11:51 a.m.

    It is not untrue. Thats the basis of conservatism.- Raleigh Rocks1

    It IS true though because the current republican party isn't really conservative.

    They complain about Obama doubling the debt.

    When Bush II doubled the debt.

    And Reagan nearly tripled it.

    In fact in the last 40+ years the only time the US did NOT engage in deficit spending was under a DEMOCRATIC president (Clinton)

    Your notion the republicans are actually conservative on anything but fringe social issues is laughably wrong.

    The idea they don't grossly favor the rich even more so. Simply look at where nearly ALL the growth in wealth and income has gone over the last 30+ years.

  • Raleigh Rocks 1 Mar 22, 11:46 a.m.

    Junkmail or junkmind.

    It is not untrue. Thats the basis of conservatism. Equal under God with the opportunity to prosper. Conservative principal. Libs done even have principles.

  • pappybigtuna1 Mar 22, 11:26 a.m.

    Mr. Tata, I believe is a wise man, with the interest of the people of NC. The "gas" tax revenue is down, I not that smart, I think it has something to do with the price of GAS. But then again who am I?

    Since the Dem controlled elected decided to institute the "toll road concept", I for one will NEVER USE OR PAY FOR THE USE OF 540. Now, it is in the laps of the GOP.

    Stupid me, I would do something like lower the gas tax, thus lowering the cost of gas, more people would buy more gas and drive more, and maybe use I-540 more. This concept makes too much sense

  • Thought Criminal WS Mar 22, 11:22 a.m.

    Fight as hard as you can against toll roads anywhere in this state.

    Mark my words and listen well: once a toll road goes in it NEVER comes down and will only escalate in price.

    Stop the corruption and graft to education & transportation and fix the budget without raising taxes. If our elected officials can't do this, fire them / vote them out regardless of party affiliation.

  • Raleigh Rocks 1 Mar 22, 11:16 a.m.

    cvdurham says We can disagree on who's to blame but the GOP is in power now and their fix for everything is more taxes, fees, and tolls for the middle class.

    Simple an idiotic statement. GOP wants all classes to make more money so they will be less dependent on government. Dems want to keep the common man down and dependent on the government. This is basic.

  • wral mods blow close my account Mar 22, 11:00 a.m.

    "So please, don't go trying to lay this on GOP when the Dems have their hands just as, if not more, dirty." firefalcon100

    We can disagree on who's to blame but the GOP is in power now and their fix for everything is more taxes, fees, and tolls for the middle class.

  • goldenosprey Mar 22, 10:41 a.m.

    bbob, Gas taxes paid for 540. The tolling is a double dip and should never have been allowed in the first place. You are not subsidizing "rich" North Raleigh residents. A wide variety of drivers use I-540.

    Unfortunately we broke the seal on toll roads and the middle and working class is looking at New Jersey taxes with Mississippi schools.

  • SMAPAEA Mar 22, 10:36 a.m.

    So..just as an idea, why not just tax on use. You have to have odometer readings taken yearly at inspections, so develop a formula and tax by use. That should even things out. If you're concerned about truckers, make them except and continue to tax Diesel fuel.

  • wildpig777 Mar 22, 10:36 a.m.

    you priviledged folks in wake county, orange and durham county thinks your roads are in bad shape-- you need to get out into the real world-- that'd be the rest of nc and see what we have to deal with daily.

  • bbobbitt Mar 22, 10:16 a.m.

    To start with, why don't we toll the entire outer loop around Raleigh instead of only tolling a small section between I-40 and Holly Springs and Fuquay Varina, which is what should have happened. This way, we'd generate tons of revenue, and everybody that uses the loop would be paying for all the road construction thats needed in the area. It would also be much more fair, and would stop subsidizing the rich folks in north Raleigh. And yes, I know, we'd have to re-name the road from I540 to NC 540 in order to be legal. But it could happen if our politicians were interested in revenue growth, and fairness.

  • firefalcon100 Mar 22, 10:13 a.m.

    cvdurham.. i could be mistaken, but i believe it was a democrat named easley who robbed the highway trust fund to fund his pet projects which left the DOT in the situation as it is now. So please, don't go trying to lay this on GOP when the Dems have their hands just as, if not more, dirty.

  • Smilester Mar 22, 10:10 a.m.

    This state already has some of the highest tax rates in the southeast. To throw toll roads on top of that would be crushing economically. You either have taxes or you have toll roads. Pick one or the other. I am really not sure what this state will look like in 4 years. All this Republican led government is going to definitely accomplish over the next 4 years is having the lowest ranked public school system in the country. Other than that the verdict is out.

  • jcthai Mar 22, 10:09 a.m.

    This is just another example of how incompetent Tony Tahtah is. He screwed up the Wake County Schools bus system and now he is going to screw up the entire state of NC transportation system. Isn't he supposed to be a Republican? A conservative? So he is proposing to essentially raise taxes? Wow.

  • piloterror1 Mar 22, 9:36 a.m.

    DOT coveniently cant find money for essential roads. but finds PLENTY of money to fund pet projects.road tolls are like lottery money. apportioned money then goes to pork barrel projects and the tolls support the roads. nothing like paying twice for something........

  • wral mods blow close my account Mar 22, 9:33 a.m.

    As the GOP rewrites the tax system giving big breaks to the top 1%, get ready middle class to take it in the wallet with taxes, fees, and tolls.

  • Dark_Horse Mar 22, 9:26 a.m.

    I thought the reason why we had the highest gas tax in the southeast was because that money went to road construction and repairs...?
    Toll roads or lower the gas tax. You can't have both.

  • junkmail5 Mar 22, 8:50 a.m.

    I might feel a bit differently about this if the NC roads were so very much better than those in VA, SC, or TN. Sadly, as I drive across the state line in any direction, I just fail to see any significant difference- SailbadTheSinner

    To be fair, NC -has- a lot more roads than those other states.

    As of 2010 we had over 221,000 miles of road (more now)

    SC has barely more than half that mileage of road...and VA isn't much better.... TN is closer but still has about 30,000 fewer miles worth.

    Not to say we can't do things better- we surely can- but the situation isn't quite identical.

  • A_Patriot Mar 22, 8:17 a.m.

    I've got it! Toll the home streets of all Wake school board members!

    That'll learn 'em...

  • SailbadTheSinner Mar 22, 8:13 a.m.

    I continue to be absolutely appalled at the amount of money that NC gets in the various taxes that are ‘supposed’ to be used for roads when considered against the constant whining and begging for even more funding.

    I might feel a bit differently about this if the NC roads were so very much better than those in VA, SC, or TN. Sadly, as I drive across the state line in any direction, I just fail to see any significant differences….

    My suggestion would be to pay a bit more attention and to do what we out here in tax-land do: Make do with what you have….

    And, while I’m at it, a bit more control over the construction process might prove to be cost effective too….

    STS

  • Cock a doodle doo Mar 22, 8:06 a.m.

    "So, blame him all you want but the director fouled up. Tata didn't." -Nancy

    Absolutely not true. The School Bus Plan was Tata's Baby, He lead the task force, he approved it, and he signed off on it. It is what it is, and that was his mess, no matter what your Republican friends tell you at your coupon hen gatherings.

  • 11of10 Mar 22, 8:04 a.m.

    WOW. Don't you just love how somone can live in the state for 3 or 4 years and suddenly are in a postion to dictate to everyone else.

  • ncmike Mar 21, 7:07 p.m.

    easy, toll the interstates and don't bill in-state residents (for those automatic tolls) and give NC residents a tax credit for any manual tolls paid. Problem solved.

  • mattcli Mar 21, 7:02 p.m.

    "How about a special tax assessment to the people who live along I-95 and let them pay for the benefits they are receiving."
    -- superman

    You have to be careful with that. Just because someone lives adjacent to an interstate doesn't mean they have direct access to or benefit from it. Next time you're driving pay attention to the roads that the interstate doesn't have exits for and how many houses are visible from the interstate but as cut off from it as someone who lives miles away.

  • Nancy Mar 21, 7:00 p.m.

    If the feds had not used federal highway funds (gas taxes collected by the feds to the tune of 18.1 cents per gallon) to fund other non road issues, perhaps the interstate highway system they WERE responsible for would be in better shape and not left to the states to pick up the tab.

  • Nancy Mar 21, 6:59 p.m.

    "This is the man who solely created what was the worst school transportation debacle in the State, and now he's in charge of all the state's transportation. "

    Actually, it was the school Transportation Director that messed up. His job to say whether it could be done or not and he gave it a thumbs up.

    Tata took the blame publicly, but the transportation director then quit.

    So, blame him all you want but the director fouled up. Tata didn't.

  • Nancy Mar 21, 6:57 p.m.

    "This is what happens when you fill state government with carpetbaggers."

    Wow. Actually what happens is when you have laws written by democrats that allow them for decades to move money from the DOT to the general fund, leaving less and less for road projects.

    The yearly transfer from the Highway Trust Fund to the General Fund was established by law at $170 million in 1989. It became a genuine raid in 2001 when Gov. Easley and the legislative Dems decided they needed more than that to balance the General Fund budget.

    Go ahead, do a little reading about the history of DOT being raided, just like Bev did with the lottery monies, education fund money - all to balance a budget.

    Now we have to clean up the mess, pay the feds back over $2 billion, find money that doesn't exist to do the work that wasn't done.

  • TsKaMF Mar 21, 6:10 p.m.

    No tolls !

  • nc1state Mar 21, 6:09 p.m.

    Bull. Where is the gas tax money going? You can't tell me that we have one of the highest gas taxes in the nation and then also need tolls on top of that.

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