Yesterday , in an op-ed published by the River City News and the Enquirer, Former Covington Mayor Chuck Scheper called for more federal funding for the Brent Spence Bridge project.
Mr. Scheper said:
“I propose we request $700 million from the federal government toward the cost of building the new bridge and refurbishing the existing one. Having both states and the federal government share the cost of the project would demonstrate a partnership approach to solving this crisis that is sorely needed in this country.”
According to the Initial Financial Plan for the Brent Spence Bridge Corridor Project (see page 18), the expected contribution from the federal government is $176 million.
The suggestion that $700 million is available from the federal government may be a surprise to some. The pro-toll coalition continues to assert that there is no federal funding available. Former Mayor Scheper, a proponent of tolls who was involved with project planning during his tenure as mayor, appears to believe otherwise.
“We agree the project should have more funding from the federal government before moving forward,” said Marisa McNee of Northern Kentucky United.
Mr. Scheper’s call for increased federal funding for the project comes at a time when Congress and the White House have indicated a willingness to work towards a fix for the Federal Highway Trust Fund.
“There is no reason to continue a rush to toll the Brent Spence Bridge when the White House and Congress appear to be moving towards an agreement on the Highway Trust Fund,” concluded McNee.