LG: Ballot Question Would Not Stop Bridge Project

Aug 10, 2012

Lieutenant Governor Brian Calley says a ballot question to require a public vote on a new international bridge won’t stop the project.

The ballot question is backed by the owners of the Ambassador Bridge, which would compete with a new span in Detroit.

Governor Rick Snyder signed a deal in June with Canadian officials to build the bridge. Canada would pick up the billion dollar cost and recoup the money from tolls. The ballot campaign says that’s too rosy a scenario and wants to require public votes for international bridges and tunnels.

The Ambassador Bridge owners are funding the ballot campaign – which includes a multi-million dollar ad buy.

Lieutenant Governor Calley says the ballot question can’t stop the bridge. But he says it could slow down the project.

“We would expect that the owners of the Ambassador Bridge will use that as the basis for more lawsuits and more delay tactics," he says. "These guys are really good at suing, really bad at winning.”

Calley says the amendment could stop or delay future infrastructure projects on the border. There are two other international bridges in Michigan and a privately owned rail tunnel.