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Few Details Released On Proposal To Merge KDOT, Turnpike Authority

Jimmy Emerson

Gov. Sam Brownback has proposed merging the Kansas Turnpike Authority and the state's highway department, but so far few details have been released.

Michael Johnston, president and CEO of the KTA, says he hasn't yet taken a stance on the proposal.

"We've not seen exactly, you know, what the governor plans, and we will in due time, but I'm just awaiting more details," Johnston says.

Brownback has said merging the KTA and KDOT will create around $15 million a year in efficiencies. Johnston says he believes the KTA is running efficiently in its current form.

"We work at trying to keep our cost structure reasonable, and at the same time trying to provide the best service for our costumers, who after all pay for everything we do in the final analysis," he says.

The KTA is funded not by tax dollars, but with the tolls paid by drivers. The governor's administration has said merging the two agencies would create efficiencies in KDOT by combining offices and staff with the KTA .