It’s very clear that CRC has sucked up funding from every available source. 2011-10-26_CRC_Monthly_Report_Sept_2011_FNL-1 Appendix H-1 (3)
What’s today’s story? Two weeks ago the staff and consultants for the CRC highway mega-project made their third presentation at a hearing of the CRC legislative oversight committee. Unlike previous hearings, this one was electric – and made front-page news in The Oregonian. CRC consultants and staff presented the oversight committee with a new plan – one to cut back the CRC by $650 million, eliminating expanded connections to the ports.
This spring the Oregon legislature created an oversight committee on the Columbia River Crossing, deciding a project of this scale and expense warranted a closer look. At that committee’s inaugural meeting, Rep. Wand asked about the criteria used to select the project and move it forward, and Rep. Bentz tried to get to the bottom of the Purpose and Need statement. Legislators, understandably, are trying to figure out how the heck we got saddled with an unaffordable mega-project, while rejecting a host of alternatives we could actually get built.
They’ve cloaked the highway expansion effort by calling it a bridge and the project the Columbia River Crossing, even though the river crossing is a small portion of the cost (more than half of which is highway interchanges), and about an eighth of the …
Last week, the independent Columbia River Crossing review panel, appointed by Governor Kulongoski, published a critique of the CRC project. Their review calls into question several major elements of the current proposal, including the design, financial plan, and environmental impact of the project. Their findings echo the concerns of project opponents who worry that the project is overly expensive and is completely out of line with Oregon’s vision for reducing greenhouse gas emissions.