Image: Montgomery County Young Republicans Board of Directors, right to left, former Chairman Landon Estay, former Vice Chairman Brad Spratt, Vice Chair Stacy Cieslewicz, Secretary Chase Willis, Public Relations Director Sean Larkin, Treasurer and Chairman Emeritus Gary Henson, Chairman Jason Millsaps, and former PR Director Kristin Christ.
Conroe, February 20 – The Montgomery County Young Republicans (YRs) called for both the Montgomery County Commissioners Court to remove the tolls from the flyovers at State Highway 242 and Interstate 45 immediately. The YRs also called for the County Executive Committee of the Montgomery County Republican Party, which meets this evening about that precise issue, to pass a resolution calling for the removal of the tolls as well.
The YRs noted that the Montgomery County government should execute the termination clause in the Pass-Through Toll Agreement, because County Judge Craig Doyal and other members of the Commissioners Court had negotiated a terrible arrangement under which the County government would have to finance 100% of the costs of construction of a third north-to-east flyover rather than the usual 80% TxDOT-20% local share arrangement utilized in typical construction arrangement of that nature.
County Judge Craig Doyal, who is one of the few remaining pro-tollroad advocates in the entire State of Texas, is fighting to keep the tolls on the SH 242 flyovers. First, he claimed the tolls were necessary for “maintenance,” although that claim turned out to be false, because the maintenance costs are tiny in comparison to the amount of the collected tolls. Then, Doyal claimed that Montgomery County should fulfill its “commitment” to the TxDOT bureaucracy by building 100% of the third flyover, even though the actual Pass-Through Toll Agreement permits the County to terminate that expensive obligation.
In order to justify Doyal’s hope to keep the tolls on the SH 242 flyovers, “establishment” politician Dale Inman, who has close ties both to the Davenport Ring and to Doyal, has agreed to sponsor an amendment to the resolution in the GOP County Executive Committee which such amendment would keep the SH 242 flyover tolls in place until the County government paid for the third flyover. In other words, the Inman pro-tolls amendment would keep the tolls on the flyovers for decades to come. The Golden Hammer has received multiple confirmations of Inman’s plans to alter the proposed resolution to remove the SH 242 flyover tolls immediately from GOP Precinct Chairmen with whom Inman has discussed his intention. Those Precinct Chairs have requested anonymity. On February 28, Inman contacted this newspaper and denied that he supported the amendment and stated that he is 100% against tollroads.
The YRs resolution follows:
“MONTGOMERY COUNTY YOUNG REPUBLICANS RESOLUTION
“WHEREAS, The Republican Party of Texas Platform Plank number 211 states: “We believe tolls should be removed when the debt on the road is retired.”; and
“WHEREAS, the bond debt associated with the flyovers on I-45 at State Highway 242 was defeased on January 5, 2018; and
“WHEREAS, continuing to charge a toll for the use of the flyovers now constitutes a form of double taxation; and
“WHEREAS, Removing the toll component from the flyovers would allow Montgomery County to execute the termination clause of the contract between the County and Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT); and
“WHEREAS, allowing for state matching funds for a third flyover and potentially saving the taxpayers of Montgomery County an estimated $9.6 million dollars in construction cost.
“WHEREAS, additionally saving the tax payers of Montgomery County over $1.2 million dollars in double taxation per year;
“Now, therefore, be it
“RESOLVED, that the Montgomery County Young Republicans call upon the Montgomery County Commissioners Court to remove the toll component of the flyovers at HWY 242 and I-45; and, be it further
“RESOLVED, that the Montgomery County Young Republicans call upon the Montgomery County Republican Executive Committee to pass a similar resolution calling for the removal of any form of double taxation.
“Approved by the Montgomery County Young Republicans Committee on Government Affairs on this 18th day of February, 2018.
“Approved by the Montgomery County Young Republicans Executive Board on this 18th day of February 2018.”