CRC Gets the Go-Ahead
The Columbia River Crossing took one step in the long journey of being built. Law makers in Salem gave the project a thumbs up. The project is on it's way to face the house and senate. Governor Kitzhaber has already said he will sign off. The project that includes a new bridge and interchanges on both sides of the river continues to be hotly debated, despite a 14-2 vote of preliminary approval from the subcommittee.
Co-chair of the subcommittee Tobias Read says he's behind it. "We have a really unique opportunity here to replace a critical piece of infrastructure in a way that gonna put people to work and have a benefit for everyone in the long run and the short run". But whose not behind it are the many opponents who point at the price tag.
Jefferson Smith, was one of the many on hand to speak out against the project in Salem Monday. "Right now the federal government is not on the hook if the thing costs more then they say its gonna cost, Oregonians are. Pay for it now, pass the revenue now, at least let Oregonians know what they're paying for". Smith and others say the cost remains a concern. Both states would need to pony up $450-million, come up with a billion dollars in tolls, and take $850-million in federal funds.