David Madore interviews Chris Girard, CEO of Plaid Pantry, who funded a financial analysis of the CRC project that is commonly called The Cortright Report.

Video one timeline:

00:00 Chris Girard discusses his background that includes having a degree in aerospace engineering, being in the Navy for seven years and being with Plaid Pantry since 1989.

01:28 Girard discusses the company’s locations and attributes Plaid Pantry’s recent success to its employees.

03:00 Girard discusses the company’s distribution routes and how the CRC project may affect the convenience store chain.

04:43 Girard talks about when the CRC project caught his eye. He was concerned with the financial plan and consulted with economist Joe Cortright.

06:57 Girard goes into details of the Cortright Report and mentions that all data used in the report came from an independent review panel hired by the governors of Washington and Oregon. (View the panel’s final report.)

Video two timeline:

00:00 Girard continues his discussion of the financial plan of the CRC project with the aid of a graph.

04:06 Girard shares his belief that the CRC’s financing plan is not what he would choose for his own business or if he was buying a home. He is concerned about paying interest on interest, which he says will be $4 for every $1 borrowed.

08:12 David Madore shows and explains another graph called “Bridge Cost Comparison.” Madore compares how much it would cost to construct the 205 bridge in today’s dollars and what the CRC project would cost.

10:43 Girard talks about the IRP’s recommendation to phase the CRC project and explains the difference between staging and phasing.

Video three timeline:

00:00 Girard suggests an independent expert look at the CRC financing plan.

01:19 Madore shares his belief that government projects aren’t conducted as sensibly as business ones.

02:05 Girard talks about sharing the “Cortright Report” information to legislatures.

* The well-documented cost to taxpayers, if the CRC stays on budget, is $10 billion. This was established by the Cortright Report (PDF) which used data from an independent review panel hired by the governors of Washington and Oregon. (View the panel’s final report.)

See our continuing coverage of the Columbia River Crossing Light Rail project.

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