State Officials Approve $142,000 For Marketing Controversial Ohio Turnpike Privatization Plan


UPDATED: Tuesday December 11, 2012 6:33 PM

State officials have approved $2.85 million to study a controversial proposal to lease the Ohio Turnpike.

Now, Watchdog 10 has discovered that a chunk of that money will be used for marketing.

According to a state contract with consultant KMPG, its subcontractor, Columbus-based Fahlgren-Mortine is approved 5 percent of the total contract. That comes to about  $142,500 for marketing.

Watchdog 10 attended a meeting the Governor had with reporters to ask the spending is a wise use of tax dollars.

A spokeswoman for Gov. John Kasich answered instead.

Connie Wehrkamp said that the money is an appropriate use of tax dollars.

“It’s not unusual for us to contract with outside consultants on special contracts like this,” said Deputy Press Secretary Wehrkamp. “And Our Contract with KPMG is no different. Fahlgren is a subcontractor of KPMG, and they’ve worked with both KPMG and the Ohio Department of Transportation on communication issues.”

Kasich said that he thought it was important that people around the state know what the Turnpike plan is.

Kasich said that Ohioans can expect a big announcement regarding research on the Ohio Turnpike privatization project in the next couple of days.

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