Senate Bill 1610
SB 1610 requires the Oklahoma Turnpike Authority (OTA) to prepare a report. The report must include:
Factors the OTA considered when determining the South Extension Turnpike (from Lexington to I-240 along Lake Thunderbird).
Whether this is the best route to help with traffic flow and how the evidence OTA has supports this.
The impacts and effects this route has on businesses, citizens, and private and public lands.
Whether alternate routes were considered and why they weren’t chosen.
After this report is completed, copies must be given to the Governor, President Pro Tempore of the Senate, and the Speaker of the House at least 180 days before issuing any bonds for the design and construction of the route.
SB 1610 does not affect the state budget. Why? OTA gets it funds from toll revenue and debt financing (bonds that are sold to investors). These bonds must be repaid with interest to these investors at some point in the future. The OTA is against this bill because it will delay the issuing of the bonds and the start of this project. The OTA also feels it will increase the costs of the project due to inflation and increasing interest rates – they may have to issue more bonds.