TORONTO, Ont. -- The Ontario Trucking Association is refuting claims that the proposed publicly-owned second crossing at Windsor-Detroit, the so-called Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) project, is dead.
TORONTO, Ont. — The Ontario Trucking Association is refuting claims that the proposed publicly-owned second crossing at Windsor-Detroit, the so-called Detroit River International Crossing (DRIC) project, is dead.
Though a bill approving DRIC was not introduced or voted out of the state senate transportation committee before the Michigan legislative session for the Nov. 2 gubernatorial election, OTA reps say the clock has not yet run out for supporters of the project.
According to OTA president David Bradley, while there is still a lot of work to do, a majority of business and public interest groups on both sides of the border support DRIC and there are still many reasons to remain optimistic that a deal can be done before the end of the year.
“The chairman of the senate transportation committee remains committed to introducing a new bill that would give DRIC the green light and address concerns of the Republican dominated senate,” the OTA said in a release. “Officials from both sides of the legislature continue to work hard towards consensus.”
Earlier this week, both houses of the Michigan legislature approved a Michigan Department of Transportation (MDOT) budget bill which provides for extended funding for DRIC research and planning. And the senate majority leader has committed to Canada’s transport minister that there will be an up and down vote on DRIC in the senate, according to the OTA.
Immediately following the Nov. 2 election, the current Michigan legislature reconvenes for a lame-duck session. The OTA says there will be 12 legislative days over a month, leaving time to introduce and pass the DRIC bill.
“There is no more important piece of legislation in Michigan than the DRIC bill for consideration during the lame-duck period,” said the OTA release. “This is not to underestimate the amount of work there is to do, the ongoing opposition from a vociferous few, or the political wild cards that could come into play, but DRIC continues to be the best option for Windsor-Detroit according to a bi-national panel who studied the issue for 10 years and the vast majority of stakeholders.”
“What is right will I believe prevail in the end,” says Bradley.
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