Giant tollway to bisect Texas

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DALLAS — Although a conspiratorial secrecy shrouds much of the plan, Texans are beginning to find out that tens of thousands of acres will be taken from them to create an incredibly wide transportation corridor running the length of the state from north to south. The “Trans-Texas Corridor,” or “TTC” is reputed to be the brainchild of Gov. Rick Perry, but Texans suspect that someone else — someone smarter, higher in the ranks of the right-wing government, and even lower in ethics — is actually pulling the strings.

A broad outline of the project is beginning to emerge. The TTC would be up to a quarter-mile wide, enough to include a 10-lane superhighway, a railroad right-of-way and an optic fiber network. It would span Texas approximately on the same course as the present “NAFTA Highway,” IH 35, from Laredo to the Red River. After the Texas section is under way, the corridor would continue to bisect the nation into Canada just beyond Duluth, Minn.

The governor says that Texans will benefit from trucks and locomotives pulling “free trade” cargo from Mexican seaports through Texas and into the nation’s midsection. Teamsters and longshore workers don’t like having union labor excluded from the transportation process; construction workers don’t like being left out; farmers don’t want to lose their land; construction companies don’t like having all the work done by foreign contractors; workers on both sides of the border don’t like NAFTA and the other so-called “free trade agreements;” and almost nobody likes being left in the dark while plans and commitments have apparently already been made in secret!

“Public” hearings opened July 10 and are supposed to continue for a month. Early participants complain that the arrangements have already been made and they have little or no chance for input. The main contract has been allotted to a Spanish company, Cintra-Zachry. The Texas attorney general ruled the terms had to be made public, but Gov. Perry has gone to court to prevent disclosure — this according to http://prisonplanet.com, writing about the new Blackland Coalition of anti-corridor farmers who do not want to see their farms ruined by eminent domain.

Even Perry’s own Republican Party convention, in June, opposed the TTC on grounds that Texans should not have to pay tolls for passage that was formerly free. Perry’s three gubernatorial opponents — a renegade Republican, a renegade Democrat and the Democratic Party nominee — are having a field day with the issue!