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Tue October 4, 2011
New attack on proposed new Detroit-Windsor bridge
The owners of the Ambassador Bridge are once again attacking Governor Snyder’s push to build a new bridge between Detroit and Windsor, Ontario.
The company says experts it hired say the proposed bridge would not attract the billions in federal money promised by the governor and would end up costing Michigan taxpayers money.
Matt Moroun is the vice chair of the Ambassador Bridge company. He says "building a new bridge to Canada will not garner any more federal funds for highways in Michigan…then what Michigan gets ordinarily from the feds every year.”
The governor’s office accuses Moroun of trying to ‘cloud’ the facts.
The governor's office took special offense to a claim by one of the Moroun family's experts that the governor is misleading the public when he suggests the state of Michigan will receive billions of dollars in additional federal transportation aid if it builds the bridge. The governor's office issued this written statement:
· The administration has never said the $2.2 billion match will be a lump sum. When we spend the Canadian contribution throughout the timeline of the project, then we will see the federal dollars. It has always been anticipated and conveyed that the draw down will be approx. $50 million the first year (drawing down $200 million of federal funds) and $100 million every year for the next 5 (drawing down $400 million a year) totaling $2.2 billion over the course of the project; never a lump sum.
· Anyone in state government knows that MI has recently struggled to meet the federal match. Receiving the $550 million Canadian contribution will help us receive the federal 80/20 match.
· Contrary to the assertion re: the $2.2 billion, the money will actually be spent on already approved road projects all over the state that are outlined in the five-year MI Dept of Transportation plan.
Governor Snyder continues to push for a plan that involves taking a half billion dollars from Canada to help pay for Michigan’s share of the construction costs. Snyder has said he wants the legislature to vote on the plan this month.