PHIA News Digest – Vol. 2, No. 15
Pennsylvania State troopers have a message for drivers on the Pennsylvania Turnpike — Slow down, pay attention or you will pay.
The speeding sting stems from a tragic loss. Nearly three years ago, a Pennsylvania Turnpike worker was killed near the Downingtown Exit because someone was speeding. Since then, State Police have been conducting speeding stings to prevent workers from being injured or killed.
Texas had high hopes for the southern segments of SH 130, a 41-mile stretch of the high-speed toll road east of San Antonio. A pair of investors stepped forward and offered what sounded like a great deal: Texas would get a big check for turning the rights to build and operate the toll road over to a private entity, a move that would give the state a new highway and a share of the tolls.
But a decade after Texas and its partners first shook hands, the corporation running the road is in bankruptcy — with more than $430 million still owed to U.S. taxpayers — and more than a billion owed to other investors, too.
Governor Tom Wolf joined representatives from PennDOT to launch the 2017 construction season and announce major investments in road improvements throughout Northeastern Pennsylvania.
Due to Act 89, the state’s transportation plan, northeastern Pennsylvania will see a significant increase in the amount of work taking place this year to improve the transportation network for the region.
It’s difficult to argue the Pennsylvania State Police is not worth the money state taxpayers spend for the wide-reaching protection.
With reduced numbers and a wide coverage area, the State Police faces increasing challenges of covering areas that do not feature local law enforcement agencies as more municipalities fall under its umbrella.
However, as the state’s infrastructure — from roads to bridges to ports — continues to crumble, the practice of siphoning money out of the Motor License Fund is a matter of concern.
Rep. Mike Sturla, D-Lancaster, has been calling for a state charge to municipalities without local police forces for Pennsylvania State Police coverage for nearly 15 years, to no avail. What’s different this time? He has a powerful ally.
Gov. Tom Wolf has proposed implementing a $25-per-person fee for state police coverage in un-policed townships and boroughs in his $32.3 billion 2017-18 budget.