NC Media Watch

A quest for reason and accuracy in letters to the editor, guest editorials and other issues of interest to the citizens of Western Nevada County.

Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Where in the world?

Kent Gallagher is totally off the wall in his "Highway 49 interchange costly to taxpayers," May 31, 2005
The Union recently reported that the new Highway 49 interchange proposed one mile south of the McCourtney interchange will cost approximately $55 million.

This is an interchange proposed by the developers of the proposed developments known as Northstar and South Hill. These two projects are seeking our approval for as many as 2,417 residential units. This is at least 300 percent more than the current General Plan would allow for.

Since the developer pays none or a nominal amount for this freeway interchange, the rest of us taxpayers get to foot the bill. . . .
What in the world? Where do letter writers to The Union get their information? Not attending Transportation Commission Meetings, that is for sure. The tax payers are not funding the Crest View interchange. We have a regional mitigation fee program in Nevada County. New development pays for the roads, intersections, and build out impacts. This interchange is not in the Transportation Commission’s Budget, nor in Caltran’s Budget to build. This is a development driven interchange and will be paid for by the developers. Well in reality, it will be paid for by the people buying homes or businesses in the Northstar and South Hill Village Developments. The cost of the Interchange will be divided by the number of homes and businesses built, and each buyer will pay their share for the privilege of easy SR- 49 freeway access.

I am not comfortable with the 300 percent number either, but need time to do more research. Watch for an update later today.

Oh, time for some disclosure. I am a Transportation Commissioner.

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