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KERA-FM Gets to the Corps of the Matter With Mayor Tom and the Trinity River Toll Road

We ain't sayin' Mayor Tom's a liar ... oh, no, wait. Yes, we are. Pardon.
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KERA-FM (90.1) this morning quotes Mayor Tom Leppert as saying the US Army Corp of Engineers is totally cool with dropping a toll road into a flood way. As in, "The Corp has signed off on the safety issues. They signed off on the environmental issues. They feel very comfortable with it."

Then KERA's Shelly Kofler quotes the Corps' Trinity Corridor Project Manager Gene Rice, who says, once more, no, not so much: "We've made no determination at this time on whether the project will be acceptable or not. We are still working with the transportation interests to make sure it could go in safely if it goes in. But no determination has been made or will be made for several years." Rice goes on to say he's comfortable only with Mayor Tom dipping his chocolate into Rice's peanut butter.

This story comes two days after KERA ran a piece that contradicts another of Leppert's scare tactics: that Project Pegasus won't move forward should voters reject the toll road on November 6. Says Ric Williamson, chairman of the Texas Transportation Commission, "Project Pegasus is so important to the clean air plan and congestion relief for North Texas I can't imagine a circumstance where it wouldn't be redesigned and moved forward. It's just that important."

KERA has gathered all of this week's Trinity toll road coverage in one spot, where you will also find nine video excerpts from the September 25 debate in Oak Cliff. Its series concludes tomorrow with a story on "the economics of building the toll road." To Schutze, that's just sexy talk right there. --Robert Wilonsky

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