Martinez Amendment, Lucio Amendment, Phelan Amendment (p. 39, p. 69, p. 71) - To allow TxDOT or RMAs to enter into controversial Comprehensive Development Agreements (CDAs or public private partnership toll projects).
The House just voted down such projects on May 5 by a vote of 82 - 51, which made national news.
The Phelan Amendment is the worst of the worst because it authorizes broad authority forever with no sunset date, no meaningful oversight by elected officials (the MPOs do not negotiate the terms of the contracts and cannot set or control toll rates), and without the consent of the voters who have to pay it all back. It pretends to impose some public protections when, in fact, this hurts the public in the worst possible way - by requiring federal subsidies (a double tax) and making us repay those subsidies with interest for our lifetimes.
We provided an extensive bill alert (opposing HB 2861) detailing all the reasons why these sweetheart deals are anti-taxpayer, put the power to tax in the hands of private companies, represent eminent domain for private gain, use public money to subsidize/guarantee the losses of private firms (corporate welfare), and hurt working families through punitively high tolls for our lifetimes. There are NEVER any carrots that can be dangled that will make CDAs acceptable. Supposed 'protections' are merely putting lipstick on a pig.
Both party platforms have planks opposing these types of toll projects. Texans of ALL political stripes hate CDAs in ANY form.
For more information on why your State Rep. MUST oppose CDAs go here.