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Oh & Ky transportation leaders discuss Brent Spence options

Michael Keating

Leaders in Ohio and Kentucky say the Brent Spence Bridge Project remains on target for a 2015 ground breaking but there's still no solid funding plan in place.

Mike Hancock of Kentucky says the states need to get creative when it comes to funding the project.

"There are opportunities to work with the community to see if there's anything we can do to make the toll rates more palatable."

Ohio Transportation secretary Jerry Wray agrees that tolling is part of the answer but not the entire solution.

"There's going to be state motor fuel tax from both states," he says. "There's going to be federal motor fuel tax from both states. There's going to be tolls and we're applying for a TIF, a loan, from the federal government so there's going to be a combination of funding options that we're going to be looking at in the very near future."

Wray makes it clear, tolling the bridge wouldn't be a financial windfall for either state.

"This financial plan that we come up with will be to pay for the bridge, not to make money."

Hancock also disputes any notion that Ohio will benefit disproportionately from a new bridge.

"At the end of the day it's going to be better for everyone."

Both Wray and Hancock say work also needs to be done on the Federal Highway Trust Fund and the Motor Fuel Tax.