Media & Public Relations

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William Capone
Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission
(717) 939-9551 ext. 3040

April 21, 2008


PA Turnpike Commission Issues $245 Million in Subordinate Bonds

HARRISBURG, PA (04/21/2008) -- The investment community this week provided the PA Turnpike Commission with a strong vote of confidence as the Commission very successfully sold $245 million in new bonds.

The bond proceeds will fund the Turnpike’s final payment to PennDOT this fiscal year in the amount of $230 million as mandated by Act 44, bringing the total first year payments to PennDOT to $750 million.

The $750 million will fund local road and bridge projects across the Commonwealth, as well as provide capital and operating funding to 73 mass transit agencies.

“Once again the investment community recognized the Turnpike Commission as a strong financial organization and welcomed the opportunity to purchase our revenue bonds. The demand was so strong that the Turnpike was able to lower initial offering yields on many of the bond maturities. As a result we were able to get a better deal for our customers and, ultimately, for the Commonwealth overall,” said Turnpike Vice Chairman Timothy Carson. “This sale validates the strong financial underpinnings of our agency and is yet another demonstration of the fact that Act 44 is working.”

The Turnpike sold the bonds on Thursday, April 17th. “We were advised by our underwriter that the tax-exempt bonds were priced at yields which outperformed a number of similar financings that took place this week resulting in a very attractive long-term cost of funding. The Turnpike bonds were supported by both large and small institutional buyers nationally,” said Turnpike Director of Treasury Management Nick Grieshaber.

“The pricing levels for the 2008A Bonds are a clear sign that the market continues to have a high degree of confidence in the Turnpike Commission as well as our ability to undertake and deliver on our new responsibilities under Act 44,” said Carson,

Carson said the Commission looked forward to sharing details on the Turnpike’s financial status with members of the General Assembly as lawmakers gear up to review a proposal to privatize the Turnpike.

“The stakes are high – many billions of dollars of critically needed transportation infrastructure to be funded and many generations of Pennsylvanians to be impacted. We’re committed to making sure that Act 44 works, that we fund our transportation infrastructure adequately in an equitable way,” Carson said. “We look forward to the coming debate and we look forward to the opportunity to participate in the legislative hearing process,” Carson said.

Act 44 was signed into law on July 18, 2007 by Governor Edward Rendell. The bill calls for increased tolls on the existing Turnpike system and for new tolls to be collected on I-80. The Turnpike and PennDOT have filed a joint application with the Federal Highway Administration (FHWA) seeking permission to toll I-80.

Under Act 44, approximately two-thirds of all new transportation funding will be generated by users of the current Turnpike system while the remainder will be generated by the new tolls to be collected on I-80. Under any lease scenario, the Turnpike’s current users would pay 100 % of any new funding for transportation projects.

For more information on Act 44 and the I-80 project, please visit