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Food For Thought: They Sure Are Pumped About Taking Over Our Roads

Recent Headlines Related To Macquarie's Push To Privatize American Roads

Comments

Boy, it really stinks that a private company is making profits in our state. I wish all companies doing business here lost money. That way, we Hoosiers would know we aren't being taken advantage of.

That was the sound of a point whooshing over your head.

I wish the Guv believed in helping Indiana companies.

Turns out everyone is doing better on this deal than anticipated. From the Indy Star article about the Democrats raiding Major Moves dollars:

"Austin (a Democrat) said the state had projected the Toll Road money would grow by about 5 percent a year. In reality, the fund has been growing at around 5.25 percent, she said."

"Turns out everyone is doing better on this deal than anticipated."

Especially the people who bought our road.

Nice try, though.

No, TDW, I got the point. I just disagree with it. Perhaps you missed this debate on the Senate floor last year: Vi Simpson offered an amendment that would require a certain percentage of Macquarie-Cintra's proceeds to stay in the state. Brandt Hershman got up, and asked Simpson why we don't require other businesses to keep profits in the state.

"When you go to the supermarket and buy bananas, for example" Hershman asked. "Why don't we mandate some of that money stay in the state."

Simpson: "I try to buy Indiana products."

Hershman: "You buy Indiana bananas?"

Do YOU get the point, TDW? If there ain't a company in Indiana growing bananas or running Toll Roads, you can't buy a Hoosier banana or hire an Indiana company to run a toll road!

But there was an Indiana company running the Toll Road.

It was called Indiana.

It was doing a helluva job too. I especially liked that we had the whole road paid off and we weren't paying interest on it.

What? We were still paying interest? We had only paid a few million toward the principal in several decades? Oh.

*Cue the guy who gets on here and talks about how much of a profit the road made*

Why can't you understand, TDW, that there doesn't have to be a loser in every deal? Not everything is zero-sum. Sometimes, two entities can enter into a deal that helps both.

I can understand that, my anonytroll friend.

But in this particular deal, we got a decade of transportation funding, and they got 75 years of profit.

Why can't you understand that it's not good for Indiana's long-term viability to sell off all of its assets in the here and now?

I could understand your anger about a scenario like that. But we are talking about something we couldn't even pay off on our own. In 75 years, we'd still be paying on that thing. But we got a bunch of cash for it. And that's why it's a win-win.

"In 75 years, we'd still be paying on that thing. But we got a bunch of cash for it. And that's why it's a win-win."

Says you.

That wool over your eyes must get itchy.

"Says you."

Wow. After reading your blog for so long, I've come to expect more of an argument from you.

Well, I guess you did take that wool-over-my-eyes cliche and turn it into a snarky retort. That's something.

"After reading your blog for so long, I've come to expect more of an argument from you."

You're throwing out opinion as fact; namely, you're assuming we'd still be paying on the road in 75 years and that we couldn't have leveraged money out of it in other ways.

I notice you don't discount that we traded 75 years of control for 10 years of money. No one is arguing that $3.8 billion isn't a "bunch of cash."

But is it worth it?

Survey says no.

The facts are, TDW, that 50 years into the lease under Indiana control, the state had paid off about 10-15 percent of the loan amount. So, you're right, that was my opinion. But history shows that my opinion is based in fact.

I getting tired of rehashing arguments that are SO 2006, but if you keep bringing up the profits Macquarie will bring in (note to readers: the concessionaire is nowhere CLOSE to making up their $3.8 billion investment yet) I'll keep arguing that this was a good deal.

The Ford Motor Company had a fast cash plan in the 90's with trucks and SUVs.

That worked well didn't it?

No one is arguing that companies based or operating in Indiana shouldn't make a profit. But when you're making money off an idea that wasn't well thought out and the Guv jumped the gun on, then yes, it is a bad idea. Moreover, the firm is making money off taxpayers at the expense of higher tolls while the 3.85 billion and the roads it helped build will long be gone by the time that the lease ends.

It's just like those companies that prey on those who have won the lottery or are receiving annual payments of some kind and then offer them a one time settlement of pennies on the dollar. That's the same thing that happened to Indiana as Uncle Mitch & OMB fudged the numbers to make it look like a good idea.......

"It's just like those companies that prey on those who have won the lottery or are receiving annual payments of some kind and then offer them a one time settlement of pennies on the dollar."

That's an interesting comparison. First, that someone was dumb enough to play the lottery, which is a product of the democratic party that preys primarily on poor poeple. Second, you'd have to have an assett that was making you money for your comparison to ring true. You might have the won the lottery, but if you acted like the state had IN THE PAST, and borrowed and bonded until the assett was historically a net loss year-to-year, then the state was already acting like a company that preys upon the assett.

The sad part about it is that the money is supposed to fund the democrat's 10 year construction plan developed by the previous administration. It was damn near completely unfunded. Now the same democrats want to raid the fund to pay for unspecified, non-indot projects, even though local money was already provided by the deal. Which they opposed.

In about 15 years (or less) when it will be obvious what a disaster this Macquarie deal has become everyone in Indiana will be screaming about how screwed we were. The loudest screamers will be the ones who are singing the loudest praises now. And of course li'l Mitch will be long gone.

Macquarie did what the State of Indiana couldn't do for 25 years: have the competency to manage the Toll Road EFFECTIVELY.

That right there speaks volumes about government in general...how incompetent, corrupt and inefficient it is.

Now...time to abolish that abomination known as Welfare.

Excellent posts 7:05 and 8:51. I'm glad to know there are many out there that believe contracting out the Toll Road operations was the right thing to do.

IMHO, government's responsibility is limited to enacting laws, then enforcing them, and maintaining a standing military to ensure the security of our country. Anything beyond that is better served by the private sector.

I'm glad to know there are many out there that believe contracting out the Toll Road operations was the right thing to do."

There aren't. It's, like, two people who keep posting over and over.

Go ask Brian Bosma how many of their constiuents supported the Toll Road idea..... and you wonder why they lost the majority?

"Macquarie did what the State of Indiana couldn't do for 25 years: have the competency to manage the Toll Road EFFECTIVELY."

It wasn't a matter of competency - it was a matter of guts. Neither party has the guts to raise taxes, cut spending, or raise tolls. It was easier to sell out than find some guts.

"It was easier to sell out than find some guts."

If memory serves, and often it doesn't, the Guv raised tolls and then sold the road.

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