Auditor General Eugene DePasquale last week made some pretty stark claims about the future of the Pennsylvania Turnpike given debt levels and what it would take to pay off existing imbalances.
In fact, DePasquale said the Turnpike faces going down a “road to ruin” if it continues the practice of relying on toll increases to pay down the $11.8 billion in existing debt.
However, according to the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review, DePasquale himself supported the bill that put the Turnpike in its current situation banking on the tolling of I-80 to balance a plan that even at that time was unsustainable without it.
Essentially, the state’s fiscal watchdog joined in supporting a fiscally imprudent scheme that he now claims—and was aware of at the time of the vote—is putting the Turnpike on an unsustainable path.
In response, Republican Party of Pennsylvania Communications Director Jason Gottesman, made the following statement:
“For the state’s now ‘independent fiscal watchdog’ to have supported a proposal that, at the time it was supported was unsustainable, and now try to claim a political win by bringing light to the problem shows Auditor General Eugene DePasquale has his sights set more on his future political ambitions than the consequences of his own past record.
“Instead of trying to explain away a bad vote the consequences of which he is now using to boost his chances at higher office, DePasquale should just stop fanning the flames of problems he helped cause in the first place.”