Indiana toll road done deal for Cintra-Macquarie thanks to GOP funded ads; the same companies who want to takeover the San Antonio toll project

See Driscoll’s blog about it.

Note who he calls the losers on the deal, those with concerns but without organization or deep pockets to combat the pro-toller propaganda and misinformation campaigns. We have the organization, now we need to get some deep pockets! Get on the phone folks! But my favorite is the backlash Republicans will get from having pushed this deal through when the public was against it 2 to 1…you bet there’ll be a B-I-G BACKLASH like the one we just helped orchestrate in the primaries!

Very big deal
Two foreign companies competing to develop and operate toll roads in San Antonio now have a clear path to team up and pay the most ever for a government asset in the U.S.

By Pat Driscoll
Express-News Reporter
March 15, 2006

After much wailing and thumping, Madrid-based Cintra SA and Sidney-based Macquarie Infrastructure Group got approval Tuesday to lease the 157-mile Indiana Toll Road for $3.85 billion over 75 years. The deal is expected to be finalized in June.

A year ago, the Spanish and Australian firms joined up to lease the 7.8 mile-Chicago Skyway, the first private buyout of a tollway in the U.S., for $1.8 billion over 99 years. In Texas, Macquarie and Cintra are leading various consortiums competing for several toll projects, including San Antonio’s planned 47-mile network on U.S. 281 and Loop 1604 on the North Side.

Here are some of the winners and losers in Indiana’s deal, as gleaned from reports by the Indianopolis Star and Bloomberg:


•Republicans, who squeezed out a three-vote victory in the state House to pass needed legislation. No Democrats voted for the measure while just one Republican opposed. In the 31-19 Senate vote, four Republicans were opposed while two Democrats supported it.

•Gov. Mitch Daniels, who wants to use the money to help pay for his 10-year, $10.6 billion statewide road construction plan, which he says will create thousands of jobs.

Cintra and Macquarie , which are among a handful of companies seeking to build and operate toll roads in the U.S. and profit by raising tolls and installing electronic toll collections to cut costs.

•Global investment bank Goldman Sachs stands to collect about $20 million in fees as Indiana’s adviser.



•Republicans, who might face a backlash in some districts. “We acknowledge that it’s very, very hurtful to a likely Republican majority in the House the next time around,” one leader said.

•The average Joe — an Indianapolis Star poll of 501 Hoosiers statewide found opposition running 2-to-1.

Those with concerns but without deep pockets or organization to quickly respond to well-funded industry propaganda, laments this Fort Wayne Journal Gazette editorial.