TxDOT Accused of Using Budget Trickery on New Tolls

The Texas Department of Transportation is being accused of using "accounting tricks" to build more toll roads even after Texas voters approved billions of dollars to eliminate the need for them.

“On the managed lanes they will not use any of Prop 1 and Prop 7 funds, but on the other lanes they will,” says Joann Fleming at Grassroots America.  “What they're doing is dividing up roadway projects into managed lanes and free lanes.”

“Voters were promised with both Prop 1 and Prop 7 if you'll just go vote for this, this money will solve all of our transporation problems, and what do we here now?  Nothing but whining about how they don't have enough money,” she says.

Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick fired of a letter to the Texas Transporation Commission last week explaining his frustration with the transportation agency.

“The Texas Legislature worked hard to pass Proposition 7 in 2015 to provide billions in funding for transportation infrastructure to help eliminate the state’s need for additional toll roads. Eliminating the need for tolls was one of the primary reasons the Texas Legislature passed Prop 7 and why Texas voters approved it.”

State Rep. Joe Pickett, D-El Paso, blames the Legislature for allowing the situation to get out of hand.  “The only ones making any money and benefitting is the entity that's collecting the tolls.”

Pickett is now asking the state's attorney general to weigh in.  TxDOT meanwhile, continues to draw up plans for more toll roads.

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