(1) Tollway projects may be initiated by the Department of Transportation, by a unit of government having an interest in the installation of a tollway, or by a private entity interested in constructing or operating a tollway project. The department shall charge an administrative fee for reviewing and considering any tollway project proposed by a private entity, which the department shall establish by rule. All such administrative fees shall be deposited into the State Tollway Account.
(2) The department shall adopt rules pursuant to which it will consider authorization of a tollway project. The rules shall require consideration of:
(a) The opinions and interests of units of government encompassing or adjacent to the path of the proposed tollway project in having the tollway installed;
(b) The probable impact of the proposed tollway project on local environmental, aesthetic and economic conditions and on the economy of the state in general;
(c) The extent to which funding other than state funding is available for the proposed tollway project;
(d) The likelihood that the estimated use of the tollway project will provide sufficient revenues to independently finance the costs related to the construction and future maintenance, repair and reconstruction of the tollway project, including the repayment of any loans to be made from moneys in the State Tollway Account;
(e) With respect to tollway projects, any portion of which will be financed with state funds or department loans or grants:
(A) The relative importance of the proposed tollway project compared to other proposed tollways; and
(B) Traffic congestion and economic conditions in the communities that will be affected by competing tollway projects; and
(f) The effects of tollway implementation on community and local street traffic.
(3) Notwithstanding any other provision of ORS 383.001 to 383.075, no tollway project shall be authorized unless the department finds that either:
(a) Based on the departmentís estimate of present and future traffic patterns, the revenues generated by the tollway project will be sufficient, after payment of all obligations incurred in connection with the acquisition, construction and operation of such tollway project, to ensure the continued maintenance, repair and reconstruction of the tollway project without the contribution of additional public funds; or
(b) The revenues generated by the tollway project will be at least sufficient to pay its operational expenses and a portion of the costs of its construction, maintenance, repair and reconstruction, and the importance of the tollway project to the welfare or economy of the state is great enough to justify the use of public funding for a portion of its construction, maintenance, repair and reconstruction.
(4) If the department finds that a proposed tollway project qualifies for authorization under this section, the department may conduct or cause to be conducted any environmental, geological or other studies required by law as a condition of construction of the tollway project. The costs of completing the studies for any proposed tollway project may be paid by moneys in the State Tollway Account, provided that any such payment shall constitute a loan against the proposed tollway project and shall be reimbursed to the State Tollway Account as a part of the permanent financing for the project. [1995 c.668 §7; 1997 c.390 §2; 2007 c.531 §17]Section: Previous 383.006 383.007 383.009 383.010 383.011 383.013 383.014 383.015 383.017 383.019 383.020 383.021 383.023 383.025 383.027 Next
Last modified: August 7, 2008