Talking tolls? McCrory meets with Rick Perry in Raleigh


Wednesday December 16, 2015

Contact:  Ford Porter


Talking tolls? McCrory meets with Rick Perry in Raleigh


Raleigh, NC – Today, Governor Pat McCrory met with former Texas governor and failed presidential candidate Rick Perry at the North Carolina Governor’s Mansion. Perry posted a picture of the two on social media, calling the meeting “a Christmas visit.”

The timing of the visit raises eyebrows, however, as it coincides with the ongoing controversy surrounding Governor McCrory’s plan for 50-year tolls along I-77 in the Charlotte area. Earlier this year, the McCrory administration signed a contract with a Spanish Transportation company, Cintra, that does not cap toll fees and allows Cintra to set rates.

The plan has caused uproar across the state and already resulted in at least one primary challenge for the governor. McCrory is not the first politician to enter a controversial contract with Cintra: Rick Perry nearly derailed his career in an attempt to allow Cintra to build toll highways across Texas in the early 2000s (NYT). Additionally, Cintra filed for bankruptcy after signing long-term contracts with Texas and Indiana.

“A shady tolling deal with Cintra nearly derailed Rick Perry’s political career a decade ago. Now, after hiring the same tolling company and even the same staff, Governor McCrory has predictably run into similar controversy. It appears the governor has called Perry in to help him out of trouble. This tolling deal is bad news all the way around – and Pat McCrory is just the latest governor to try and give Cintra a sweetheart deal over middle class families,” said NCDP Executive Director Kimberly Reynolds.

Governor McCrory’s plan for 50-year tolls is eerily similar to Perry’s ill-fated plan a decade ago.

Rick Perry and Cintra(LA Times):

  • Plan to build hundreds of miles of toll highways in Texas
  • Cintra hired key Perry staff before getting contract
  • Key political contributions tied to tolling contract
  • Local leaders, farmers, and middle class families protested
  • Perry gained three opponents in following election
  • Rick Perry employed Chris McClure, current lobbyist for Cintra in North Carolina

Pat McCrory and Cintra: