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Governor announces plan to speed up urban loop projects, including Wilmington

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WILMINGTON, NC (WWAY) -- It looks like work on the Wilmington Bypass will move ahead more quickly than expected under a new plan Gov. Bev Perdue unveiled today.

Using Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle, or GARVEE bonds, the plan significantly advances the purchase of right of way or the start of construction on urban loop projects in Asheville, Fayetteville, Greensboro, Greenville, Wilmington and Winston-Salem. GARVEE bonds allow the NC Department of Transportation to borrow against future federal funding.

The plan would speed up the completion for the I-140/US 17 Wilmington Bypass. It will allow the section from US 421 in New Hanover County west to US 74/76 in Brunswick County to open for traffic in 2016. Under the original plan, only the grading and structure would have been done by then.

"Investing in our state’s infrastructure is about jobs," Gov. Perdue said. "Not only will it create jobs, but it also will build an efficient transportation network that will attract new businesses and bring more jobs to our state in the future."

According to the Federal Highway Administration, every $1 million spent on transportation creates 30 jobs, and according to the construction industry, every dollar invested in transportation generates $6 in economic impact.

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Don't get excited

just yet.

She proposes using something called "Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle" to fund this project.

What you might ask is a Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicle?

It's a bond. She proposes using borrowed money through issuance of bonds which are a form of debt.

And,apparently,if the Grants "anticipated" do not appear,guess who gets to pay for this project? You guessed it,the working taxpayers.

This sounds like some of those funky bonds which were used back in the 80s and 90s to fund corporate takeovers like RJR. The value is in the initial hype; and it goes away once the smoke clears and the purchasers see what they really got.

Someone needs to send a message to Raleigh and her Highness. You can not continue to drive the working taxpayers further into foolish debt.

Clearly, this is a feeble attempt to bolster her re-election chances.

If she didn't raid the DOT funds as often as she does, to fund some of those silly give away programs she is so enamored with, the funds would be in the bank and there would be little or no need for borrowing.

And that is what this is. Borrowing through Bond issuance.

Start now, send you State legislators a clear message. No more borrowing. At least no more borrowing until Medicaid is retired.

I-140 Bypass to be Completed in 2016

And, they said it couldn't be done. Guess they were wrong. Congrats to Leland and Mayor Futch for keeping the focus on this vital project.