Topinka Opposes Tollway Plan

June 8, 2006

Illinois Treasurer and gubernatorial candidate Judy Baar Topinka says she opposes leasing or selling the Illinois Tollway.

Democrats say talk of a tollway deal is still in its infancy.

But that didn't stop Topinka from making her feelings known on the issue.

"Selling an asset to a private vender is going to lead to high tolls. There's just no question in my mind that that will happen - period," Topinka says. "A private operator is going to be driven by a profit margin, not public interest. I mean, that's the nature of business."

Topinka says Illinois Governor Rod Blagojevich should reject any plan to privatize the tollway.

The governor says he has no plans to sell the road.

The chairman of the state Senate committee exploring the issue, Evanston Democrat Jeffrey Schoenberg, says Topinka's comments were "misdirected and inaccurate."