STATEMENT: Center Supports STOP TOLLS RI Rally. Concerns re. Big-Dig Type Cost Over-runs

January 5, 2016


Providence, RI — The ongoing dysfunction and history of inefficiency at the RI Department of Transportation (RI DOT) would likely lead to “Big Dig” level cost over-runs for the Governor’s bridge and road upgrade project, unless a more efficient delivery model is utilized. This according to the RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity, which encourages all concerned citizens to attend the rally organized by the alliance, scheduled for 3:00 pm today at the State House.

The Center has previously proposed a P3 financing and delivery model that would reduce project expenses, improve delivery times, and – most importantly – ensure cost-certainty so that taxpayers and/or drivers will not be on the hook for the inevitable cost over-runs that normally come with major public works projects.

By reducing the near- and long-term revenues required to complete the project via a P3, the argument to install a costly and unpopular tolling infrastructure is significantly weakened.

“We have heard that the Governor’s plan has factored-in extra revenues to pay for the anticipated higher future costs? Why do we accept this inefficiency in our government,” inquired Mike Stenhouse, CEO for the Center. “With a Pay-Go approach that prioritizes existing revenues in our state budget, combined with a P3 delivery model that bypasses the troubled RI DOT for this project, Rhode Islanders can enjoy an upgraded and safer bridge and road infrastructure without fear of being further taxed or tolled in the future. ”

Media Contact:
Mike Stenhouse, CEO
401.429.6115 |

About the Center
The nonpartisan RI Center for Freedom & Prosperity is Rhode Island’s premiere free-enterprise research and advocacy organization. The nonprofit Center is funded entirely by private tax-deductible donations and never accepts public funding. The mission of the 501-C-3 organization is to return government to the people by opposing special-interest politics and advancing proven free-market solutions that can transform lives by restoring economic competitiveness, increasing educational opportunities, and protecting individual freedoms.