Illinois Tollway Invites Public to Comment on 2018 Tentative Budget

Three public hearings and webinar available for public to learn more; Comments welcome via email, U.S. mail or in person

DOWNERS GROVE, IL, October 26, 2017 – The Illinois Tollway Board of Directors today invited the public to review and comment on the agency’s 2018 Tentative Budget by attending public meetings, sending comments or viewing an online presentation.

The 2018 Tentative Budget, currently under review by the Board of Directors, outlines a balanced spending plan for 2018, reducing the number of employees to the lowest level in 30 years and anticipating $1.45 billion in revenue that will be allocated to fund maintenance and operations, debt service and capital investments on the 294-mile system. The proposal anticipates an investment of $1.18 billion in capital spending, including funding for the seventh year of the agency’s 15-year, $14 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future.

Public comment on the 2018 Tentative Budget will be accepted through November 30. After the Board of Directors has reviewed the public comments and any changes have been incorporated, a final budget will be presented for approval by the Board at its December 16 meeting.

“We encourage the public to take a look at the Tollway’s proposed budget for 2018 and share their comments,” said Illinois Tollway Board Chairman Bob Schillerstrom. “The Board of Directors is committed to delivering a balanced spending plan that puts customer safety and service first and promotes diversity in the firms doing work for the Tollway as we provide for construction jobs and training opportunities.”

Public comments may be mailed to 2700 Ogden Avenue, Downers Grove, IL 60515, or submitted via the Tollway’s website through November 30. A copy of the 2018 Tentative Budget is posted on the Tollway’s website along with a 2018 Tentative Budget PowerPoint and video presentation to allow the public to access the agency’s financial information at their convenience.

The Illinois Tollway will also host three public hearings to present the 2018 Tentative Budget and accept public comments. Public attending the budget hearings may submit comments orally or in writing.

  • Tuesday, November 14, at 6 p.m., at Silver Cross Hospital, A&B Lobby, 1900 Silver Cross Boulevard, New Lenox, IL 60451.
  • Thursday, November 16, at 6 p.m. at Bensenville Village Hall, 12 S. Center Street, Bensenville, IL 60106.
  • Wednesday, November 29, at 8:30 a.m., Illinois Tollway headquarters, 2700 Ogden Avenue, Downers Grove, IL 60515.

“We value customer input and welcome their thoughts on how our agency and construction projects are being implemented from the drivers’ point of view,” said Illinois Tollway Executive Director Greg Bedalov. “The Illinois Tollway is committed to providing safe and efficient travel and spending their toll dollars wisely.”

2018 Tentative Budget

The proposed 2018 Tentative Budget provides for $1.45 billion in 2018 revenues, an $60 million increase over the current 2017 estimate, primarily due to continuing increases in toll transactions and the addition of the new Illinois Route 390 Tollway coupled with a truck toll rate increase previously approved by the Tollway Board in 2008. Of the $1.45 billion in estimated revenues, $1.43 billion is from tolls and evasion recovery, $12 million is from investment income and $8 million is from concessions and miscellaneous revenue.

The 2018 Tentative Budget allocates more than 75 percent of revenue to support infrastructure with more than $1 billion for direct funding and debt service on capital investments, as well as $353 million for maintenance and operations – an increase of just $16.5 million – less than 5 percent – over the 2017 operating costs.

The Illinois Tollway plans to reduce its current headcount while operating a new roadway on the Illinois Tollway system and continuing the largest capital program in the agency’s history. The agency’s headcount will be reduced by 55 to 1,498 employees, reducing agency’s staffing levels to the lowest level in three decades.

Overall, the 2018 Tentative Budget includes $353 million for maintenance and operations activities and services that focus on the Illinois Tollway’s customers. This includes $87 million to support customer service and tolling technology, $34 million to improve roadway safety and law enforcement services, $71 million for roadway maintenance, technology and traffic management and $20 million for information technology enhancements.

Capital funding and bonds will support a $1.18 billion 2018 capital program with Move Illinois projects, including $375.9 million to continue planning and advance work for the new I-490 Tollway and the new I-490 Tollway Interchange as part of the Elgin O’Hare Western Access Project, $213.1 million to continue design for reconstruction of the Central Tri-State Tollway (I-294), as well as $175 million for roadway improvements on the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88). Also in 2018, $325.5 million has been budgeted for systemwide roadway and bridge repairs and technology investments to keep the existing Tollway system in good repair.

About Move Illinois

The Illinois Tollway’s 15-year, $14 billion capital program, Move Illinois: The Illinois Tollway Driving the Future, will improve mobility, relieve congestion, reduce pollution, create as many as 120,000 jobs and link economies across the Midwest region. Move Illinois will address the remaining needs of the existing Tollway system; rebuild and widen the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90) as a state-of-the-art 21st century corridor; construct a new interchange to connect the Tri-State Tollway (I-294) to I-57; build a new, all-electronic Elgin O’Hare Western Access and fund planning studies for other emerging projects.

About the Illinois Tollway

The Illinois Tollway is a user-fee system that receives no state or federal funds for maintenance and operations. The agency maintains and operates 294 miles of interstate tollways in 12 counties in Northern Illinois, including the Reagan Memorial Tollway (I-88), the Veterans Memorial Tollway (I-355), the Jane Addams Memorial Tollway (I-90), the Tri-State Tollway (I-94/I-294/I-80) and the Illinois Route 390 Tollway.

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CONTACT: Dan Rozek