It would behove Wisconsin Legislators before literally selling out the public interest through privately-arranged sales of public assets to look at second thoughts in red state Ohio as well as how badly things worked down the privatization road for taxpayers when legislators in Indiana and Illinois took a quick fix from businesses, short-changed the public and signed away public assets in 50-to-99-year-leases.
From a March 22nd posting here:
File this away as Walkerites at the Capitol look to transfer public assets to private interests for ideological satisfaction, short-term budget gains and long-term added costs to taxpayers, consumers, shoppers and commuters.
One case in point: outrageously expensive parking - - now $6.50/hr.- - at Chicago ramps and on-street now leased seemingly forever to private operators:
Hat tip, streetsblog.net.
Same sort of big toll increases continue leasing the Chicago Skyway:
On January 1st, drivers who use the Chicago Skyway toll road will be paying more to use the 7.8 mile length of tollway...from the current $3.50 to $4.00.
According to a report from Fox News citing the Federal Highway Administration, the Skyway was already the costliest interstate toll road in the U.S....
The City of Chicago leased the Skyway, which links the Dan Ryan to the Indiana Toll Road, to a private investment group in 2005 for 99 years and $1.83 billion dollars.
The fatter toll policy after long-term privatization continues right into the the Indiana tollway, too:
[Consultant Richard Layman] wrote almost one year ago ("A lesson to cities that they need to be very careful when leasing assets to public private "partnerships") about the continuing debacle of Chicago's long term lease of its parking garages and parking meters to a for profit consortium.
The Indiana Toll Road lease may have paid off in the short term, but a new study concludes it'll be a bad deal for taxpayers in the long run.