Growth of transport debt in NJ dramatic - tollers expected to bail out trust funds
By Peter Samuel
New Jersey's transportation trust fund debt is growing rapidly and debt service leaves almost nothing from traditional gas tax and registration fees revenues - shown dramatically in bar charts of the state legislature's office of legislative services analysis of the DOT budget (p26, p23.)
Debt has increased from under $4b in 2000 to close to $16b this year and the regular revenues of the TTF now go almost entirely into debt service (see nearby). For transit subsidies and untolled roadworks the state relies increasingly on general fund appropriations, grants from toll agencies, and new borrowing.
Increases in appropriations from toll agencies in the current 5 year plan grow enormously:
NJ Turnpike is bailing out the TTF this year to the tune of $76m and is expected to shell out $324m/year from 2014 on. That's about a third of total toll revenues.
They say when something has to break, it will eventually break...