McAuliffe claim about road funding scrutinized

RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) - Republicans and Democrats are going back and forth over Governor Bob McDonnell's plan to speed up borrowing to fix Virginia's roads.

Republicans believe that McDonnell is taking advantage of a good time to borrow, and in the long run save taxpayers money. Democrats counter that taking on that much debt that quickly is irresponsible.

One prominent Democrat, Terry McAuliffe took it a step further.

"The $1.8 billion in borrowing, we didn't even have a repayment mechanism, folks," McAuliffe said.

Is McAuliffe right? Did the McDonnell administration take out a loan for almost $2 billion without a plan to pay it back?

According to the reporters of Politifact Virginia, that claim is so wrong. McAuliffe's pants are on fire.

There is in fact a very specific plan to play of the debt, some of it put in place before McDonnell ever got into office.

First one third of the proceeds for taxes on insurance premiums go directly to transportation debt. So are taxes on wholesale gasoline.

All told, the state is projected to raise 28 percent more in cash to pay off the loan that the initial borrowing costs.

According to the Richmond Times-Dispatch's Jacob Geiger. Even Terry McAuliffe admitted he overstated this claim just a bit.

"He said he was speaking rhetorically, or trying to make a point, he didn't deny that there was a plan he agrees, the state does have a way to pay back that revenue, so he mislead the voters when he said there was not a plan," Geiger said.

And you can see all the information behind this week's Politifact Virginia report on their web site, and you can see all our past reports on my political blog,

Copyright 2011 WWBT NBC12. All rights reserved.