Friday, February 3, 2012

Asian carp and Eggner's Ferry

Should the connection between the Great Lakes and the Mississippi River system be severed so as to prevent the spread of Asian carp into the Great Lakes? Some people think so.


And it looks like salvage operations of the Delta Mariner and the section of the Eggner's Ferry Bridge that it knocked over could begin this weekend.

Frat foolishness in Huntington

Off topic, but my coworker Andrea Lannom wrote something about a lawsuit filed in Huntington, W.Va., and it is getting good play on our circle of Facebook friends as it keeps getting picked up.

Please remember that the behavior described in this lawsuit is not typical of that engaged in by most of the good people of the city of Huntington in the great state of West Virginia. At least, we like to think that's the case.

Her story is here.

Bridges in Louisville

Kentucky and Indiana have plans to build two new bridges over the Ohio River at Louisville. Each state is to build one of the bridges, and each bridge is expected to cost $1.3 billion. According to this article in The Courier-Journal, Indiana has set aside a bit more than $400 million for its bridge, with the rest to be financed by tolls and a public-private partnership.

Using private money for a bridge would sound strange to most people nowadays, but the first bridges across the river, in my area at least, were built by private companies that used tolls to pay them off. If memory serves, a lot of the companies had trouble during the Depression, and the states took over ownership of the bridges.

But states have to find other revenue streams for bridge projects nowadays. A replacement or other bridge to ease congestion in Cincinnati is also expected to hit the billion-dollar mark, and even a smaller bridge in a smaller community can top $80 million.

Nobody likes tolls, but that may be the only way to go nowadays.

Or maybe not. Another source of money might be found. We'll have to see.