Ohio Gov. John Kasich (R) has decided against a controversial idea to privatize the Ohio Turnpike as a way to raise money for needed highway and bridge projects, the Akron (Ohio) Beacon Journal reported.
Kasich instead unveiled a plan Thursday to generate up to $3 billion by borrowing against future tolls on the 241-mile highway that runs across northern Ohio, the paper reported.
That money would allow the state to begin work on critical infrastructure projects that have been put on hold and put about 65,000 people to work over the next six years, Kasich said.
American Trucking Associations praised the decision.
“The Ohio Turnpike is a critical artery for freight, carrying a significant share of the goods produced in America’s industrial heartland,” ATA President Bill Graves said. “We’re happy to see Ohio eschew the dangerous and irresponsible proposal to turn the Turnpike over to private, for-profit entities.”