October 17, 2013


TX: Moody’s downgrades toll road credit rating again. On Tuesday, Moody’s Investor Service once again downgraded the credit rating of the private company that built and operates the toll road. The ratings agency raised the possibility of SH 130 Concession Co. — owned by Spain-based Cintra and San Antonio-based Zachry American Infrastructure — defaulting on its debt unless traffic increases on the Central Texas roadway that connects Seguin to Mustang Ridge, just south of Austin.  San Antonio Express           

TX: Water task force against privatizing Fort Worth water department. After a seven-month study, the task force studying privatizing the Fort Worth water department is recommending that the city continue running the department. Privatization would likely force water rates up, increase costs for the city and the Tarrant Regional Water District and would limit Council’s flexibility in directing economic development, the nine-member task force decided on Wednesday. Fort Worth Star Telegram

IN: Indiana toll road money dwindles away, so what’s next?…State officials have said that something must be done because money remaining from then-Gov. Mitch Daniels’ $3.85 billion lease of the Indiana Toll Road is mostly spent or due to be spent for specific projects. As a result, Indiana must again rely on the state’s 18-cent-per-gallon fuel tax to get needed transportation work done. Land Line Magazine

FL:  Miami-Dade School Board votes down transportation outsourcing. Amid protests from hundreds of bus drivers and aides, the Miami-Dade School Board on Wednesday voted down a controversial proposed transportation outsourcing study.…. “Beyond its potential fiscal costs, privatization in Dade County could hurt the 1,700 hardworking bus drivers and aides currently employed by the district,” Garcia wrote.  Miami Herald

ID: Dems to Idaho Prisons Board: Let state run ICC. Democratic lawmakers are urging the Board of Correction to put Idaho’s largest prison back under state control instead of contracting with another private prison operator. The letter signed by 16 of the Legislature’s 20 Democrats was delivered Tuesday by an unexpected messenger: Republican Idaho Gov. C.L. “Butch” Otter’s spokesman, Mark Warbis. Businessweek

Willoughby: Federal shutdown could lead to lockout on public land. Kooky and conspiratorial as it all may sound, many of those at the root of the shutdown can be heard declaring states of emergency and offering to fund the parks. Upon closer review, they can also be seen furthering the agenda to eradicate our public lands. Denver Post