Saturday, January 12, 2013
TURNPIKE: Drivers are paying more to use the Pennsylvania Turnpike, but the executives charged with running the highway are spending those toll dollars on expensive meals and hotel rooms, without accountability or transparency.
Saturday, January 12
By Eric Boehm | PA Independent HARRISBURG – In February 2010, one or more commissioners of the Pennsylvania Turnpike walked into a Harrisburg restaurant. They, perhaps with guests, rang up a bill of nearly $500. But it’s impossible to determine the punch line of that joke because auditors who recently examined the turnpike’s expense accounts say there is no way to know much else about what happened at the restaurant. Like most expenses incurred by the top officials of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, there were no receipts and no information about the number of individuals involved, the content of their orders or the legitimate business purpose for the gathering. A regularly scheduled performance audit of the Turnpike Commission …
Wednesday, January 9, 2013
Interest rate swaps by Pa. Turnpike Commission cost taxpayers and motorists at least $108.9 million, according to Pa. Auditor General Jack Wagner
Wednesday, January 9
The following press release was provided by the Pa. Auditor General: Auditor General Jack Wagner said that an audit released Wednesday of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission has found that the turnpike’s involvement in interest-rate swaps has cost Pennsylvania taxpayers and turnpike motorists at least $108.9 million. Turnpike tolls rose Jan. 6 Wagner said the turnpike’s strategy was to use the swaps to save money, but it has instead proved to further saddle the debt-ridden commission by not using conventional fixed-rate bonds to finance its debt. Under Act 44, a Lease and Funding Agreement was entered into by the turnpike and PennDOT, which requires the turnpike to pay PennDOT $450 million a year, or nearly $24 billion, over a period of …
Monday, January 7, 2013
Pennsylvania Turnpike toll rates recently increased by 10 percent for cash customers and 2 percent for E-ZPass customers. Does that affect your drive?
Travelling on the turnpike just got more expensive. Starting on Sunday, Jan. 6, the cost to travel on the Pennsylvania Turnpike increased. The rates increased by 10 percent for drivers who pay with cash and 2 percent for E-ZPass customers. These new rates are expected to generate about $25 million in revenue in 2013, according to a statement released by the Turnpike Commission. Does the rate increase discourage you from taking the turnpike, or will you continue driving the toll roads despite the increase? Tell us by voting in our poll and sharing your thoughts in the comments.
Sunday, January 6, 2013
Pennsylvania Turnpike toll rates will increase on Jan. 6 by 10 percent for cash customers and 2 percent for E-ZPass customers.
Sunday, January 6
The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is reminding travelers that the toll rates will increase on Jan. 6 by 10 percent for cash customers and 2 percent for E-ZPass customers. According to a statement released by the Turnpike Commission, E-ZPass customers who now see about a 17-percent savings on tolls will save about 25 percent, on average, compared to cash. The new rates – which take effect at 12:01 a.m. this Sunday – are expected to generate approximately $25 million in new revenue in 2013. "The toll increase is needed, in part, to satisfy the Turnpike's obligation to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to help address a transportation-funding shortfall," the statement says. "Under Act 44 of 2007, the Turnpike continues to make annual …
Thursday, October 11, 2012
PA Turnpike CEO steps down amid spiraling debt, state investigation. He says it's taking a toll on his health.
Thursday, October 11, 2012
By Eric Boehm | PA Independent HARRISBURG — Roger Nutt, CEO of the Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission, abruptly resigned Tuesday. Nutt was appointed by Gov. Tom Corbett in 2011 to head the government agency that directs the 450-mile toll road system. He came out of retirement to accept the position and said in a brief statement he was resigning to return to retirement. Nutt, 72, told fellow members of the commission he felt fatigued, stressed and was unable to perform at the level expected. “I have decided that, for my long-term health, it is best I resign at this time,” Nutt said in a statement. He is the father of Corbett’s longtime adviser and former campaign manager Brian Nutt. As the turnpike’s CEO, he made a salary of $196,000. His …
Monday, July 23, 2012
E-ZPass trips will cost 2% more, cash trips 10% more. What's your reaction? Tell us in the comments below.
The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission announced Friday that it has approved toll increases for 2013. Starting Sunday, Jan. 6, drivers will see a 10 percent increase if paying cash, or 2 percent if paying through an E-ZPass account. The new rates are projected to bring in 3 percent more revenue and nudge drivers toward the E-ZPass system. Drivers paying electronically with E-ZPass will pay 25 percent less than those who pay in cash, up from 17 percent in 2012, and the annual fee will drop from $6 to $3 for noncommercial customers. “Implementing this toll increase generates the needed revenue to satisfy our annual transportation-funding obligation of $450 million to the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, while at the same time helping to boost …