Turnpike Leasing Announcement Expected

Dec 11, 2012

An announcement that the state plans to lease the Ohio Turnpike is expected by the end of the week.

Ohio Public Radio's Karen Kasler reports.

Gov. John Kasich has been talking about his turnpike plans for months, but not releasing many hints, other than to say that he considers the toll road an undervalued asset. But he told a group of county commissioners and county engineers to think about the turnpike this way….

“You have some very important equipment that you have to service all the time. But it’s sitting in a barn somewhere. And it’s on your books.  How many of you would allow that to just sit there? You’d try to figure out how to use that asset for sure because it means real money, real value for the citizens.”

Kasich also told the group – quoting here – the bulk of this money will be spent in the north – implying that there is a plan for a lease. But Kasich wouldn’t offer reporters much of a preview.

“What I would say about it is it’s definitely a jobs program and we also are taking into account a lot of the concerns that we heard up north. We think we’ve arrived at the right place and we’ll have a lot more to say about this.”

Kasich says he’ll roll out the plan on Thursday and talk about it throughout the state.