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It seems like the NC Treasurer's Office has been against Perdue's I-485 plan since October

Though NCDOT asserts that the NC Treasurers Office was in support of Governor Perdue's design-build-finance plan to complete Interstate 485, recently released e-mails from the treasurer's office suggest otherwise.

In an article in the Charlotte Business Journal, a number of e-mails within the treasurer's office show a strong sense of skepticism to the non-traditional construction plan.

The strongest critic seems to be Deputy Treasurer Vance Holloman who considers the design-build-finance plan as 'wild'.

Holloman goes as far to say, "[NCDOT's plan] of paying interest and principal over 10 years is not permitted by GS (General Statute)."

The Governor's office has already stated that they have consulted with the State Attorney General's office and that the plan is legal.

It appears that the root of this squabble is how to finance the road. The treasurer's office prefers to use up to $400 million in GARVEE (Grant Anticipation Revenue Vehicles) funds to fund the project. GARVEE funds do not go against the state's bond capacity. Something that the debt owed to the contractor in the design-build-finance plan would do.

However, the drawback with using GARVEE funds, NCDOT would have to reprioritize other projects. With Governor Perdue's campaign promise to Charlotte to start construction on the missing link of Interstate 485 in the balance, in addition to having limited transportation funds and a number of cities clamoring for completion of unbuilt freeway loops, it appears the NCDOT didn't want to anger Charlotte let alone the other cities again.

So now we wait for Attorney General Roy Cooper's office to come out and say whether or not this finance plan for I-485 is or is not prohibited by North Carolina's General Statutes.

Well it looks like Bev Perdue was right about one thing....she was going to get all parts of government and Raleigh and Charlotte working together...somehow I'd say this isn't exactly what she had in mind.

Story Links:
Legal concerns raised over I-485 financing plan ---WRAL
Documents: Treasurer was skeptical of I-485 Plan ---Charlotte Observer
Cat fight in Raleigh over I-485 -The CLog

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