Penn Pike's $200m EB-5 immigrant visa financing a done deal - Pike to pay lender expenses + $200k for 2% loans
2013-05-21: The Pennsylvania Turnpike is in deeper on controversial EB-5 visas-for-investment financing than we indicated in previous reports. It turns out a full loan agreement between EB-5 brokers DVRC Pennsylvania Turnpike LP (DVRCPT LP) and the Turnpike was signed April 26 which commits the Turnpike to borrowing $200 million. Paul Nussbaum of the Philadelphia Inquirer has led on reporting this and we only got a copy of the loan agreement this week.
2013-05-20: Google '6C sticker tags RFID NFC' and you generate a long list of suppliers. The tag is now a commodity item. We first opened Partshe a Hong Kong trader offering them online at 57c for one, 51c each for ten, and a link for asking a price on larger quantities.
North Carolina's lower house votes 113-0 to limit interstate tolls to added lanes - kills I-95 tolling?
2013-05-20: The North Carolina House of Representatives voted 113 in favor, none opposed May 16 to a bill that limits tolls on interstates to added lanes. This would halt the state DOT's plans to finance $4.5 billion of rebuild of the 182 miles of I-95 from the Virginia to the South Carolina order by fully tolling the interstate.
2013-05-19: One by one the state 'turnpikes' seem to be disappearing. The Kentucky and Connecticut Turnpikes went in the 1980s when de-tolling was popular and those state legislatures decided taxes could pay for the roads.
2013-05-16: The extraordinary deal the Penn Pike has done with a couple of Philadelphia brokers to borrow up to $250m from foreign investors seeking US residency visas (known as the EB-5 program) is both better and worse on a second look. The Turnpike has been quite forthcoming with information, so a reporter can't validly complain that any element of 'cover up' surrounds the affair. They are not acting as if they have anything to hide.
2013-05-15: The Port Authority New York New Jersey (PANYNJ) authorized large contracts for improvements to the three NY-NJ toll bridges on Staten Island at their latest board meeting.
2013-05-14: The Pennsylvania Turnpike restored tolls late Monday night in the 21 mile, 34km leg south of Harrisburg - IC226 I-81 to IC247 I-283 - that has served as a detour for I-81 since last Thursday. The interstate was closed after a tanker overturned and its load of diesel burned on a ramp close to the center of the four level I-81/US22/322 interchange.
2013-05-13: The New York investment rater Moody's says in a new report that toll express or managed lane projects can achieve investment grade ratings, but it will be tough. They call the service provided by toll express lanes (TELs) desirable but discretionary and hence difficult to forecast. TELs can be expected to have generally greater risks than regular toll projects, the rater says.
Penn Pike waiving tolls through Harrisburg to provide I-81 detour after diesel tanker fire damages interchange
The Pennsylvania Turnpike is waiving tolls between the Carlisle (#226) and Harrisburg East (#247) exits to help provide a detour for I-81 that will be closed for several days following a truck fire.
Philly Inquirer reports Chinese investors in low-interest rate Penn Pike interchange lending get US preference as settlers
2013-05-09: The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is set to borrow $200m toward the long awaited Turnpike/I-95 interchange from Chinese investors who get expedited immigration visas in return.