Chapter 5537: OHIO TURNPIKE AND INFRASTRUCTURE COMMISSION

5537.01 Turnpike commission definitions.

As used in this chapter:

(A) "Commission" means the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission created by section 5537.02 of the Revised Code or, if that commission is abolished, the board, body, officer, or commission succeeding to the principal functions thereof or to which the powers given by this chapter to the commission are given by law.

(B) " Turnpike project" means any express or limited access highway, super highway, or motorway constructed, operated, or improved, under the jurisdiction of the commission and pursuant to this chapter, at a location or locations reviewed by the turnpike legislative review committee and approved by the governor, including all bridges, tunnels, overpasses, underpasses, interchanges, entrance plazas, approaches, those portions of connecting public roads that serve interchanges and are determined by the commission and the director of transportation to be necessary for the safe merging of traffic between the turnpike project and those public roads, toll booths, service facilities, and administration, storage, and other buildings, property, and facilities that the commission considers necessary for the operation or policing of the turnpike project, together with all property and rights which may be acquired by the commission for the construction, maintenance, or operation of the turnpike project, and includes any sections or extensions of a turnpike project designated by the commission as such for the particular purpose. Each turnpike project shall be separately designated, by name or number, and may be constructed, improved, or extended in such sections as the commission may from time to time determine. Construction includes the improvement and renovation of a previously constructed turnpike project, including additional interchanges, whether or not the turnpike project was initially constructed by the commission.

(C) "Infrastructure project" means any public express or limited access highway, super highway, or motorway, including all bridges, tunnels, overpasses, underpasses, interchanges, entrance plazas, approaches, and those portions of connecting public roads that serve interchanges, that is constructed or improved, in whole or in part, with infrastructure funding approved pursuant to criteria established under section 5537.18 of the Revised Code.

(D) "Cost," as applied to construction of a turnpike project or an infrastructure project, includes the cost of construction, including bridges over or under existing highways and railroads, acquisition of all property acquired either by the commission or by the owner of the infrastructure project for the construction, demolishing or removing any buildings or structures on land so acquired, including the cost of acquiring any lands to which the buildings or structures may be moved, site clearance, improvement, and preparation, diverting public roads, interchanges with public roads, access roads to private property, including the cost of land or easements therefor, all machinery, furnishings, and equipment, communications facilities, financing expenses, interest prior to and during construction and for one year after completion of construction, traffic estimates, indemnity and surety bonds and premiums on insurance, title work and title commitments, insurance, and guarantees, engineering, feasibility studies, and legal expenses, plans, specifications, surveys, estimates of cost and revenues, other expenses necessary or incident to determining the feasibility or practicability of constructing or operating a turnpike project or an infrastructure project, administrative expenses, and any other expense that may be necessary or incident to the construction of the turnpike project or an infrastructure project, the financing of the construction, and the placing of the turnpike project or an infrastructure project in operation. Any obligation or expense incurred by the department of transportation with the approval of the commission for surveys, borings, preparation of plans and specifications, and other engineering services in connection with the construction of a turnpike project or an infrastructure project, or by the federal government with the approval of the commission for any public road projects which must be reimbursed as a condition to the exercise of any of the powers of the commission under this chapter, shall be regarded as a part of the cost of the turnpike project or an infrastructure project and shall be reimbursed to the state or the federal government, as the case may be, from revenues, state taxes, or the proceeds of bonds as authorized by this chapter.

(E) "Owner" includes all persons having any title or interest in any property authorized to be acquired by the commission for turnpike projects under this chapter, or the public entity for whom an infrastructure project is funded, in whole or in part, by the commission under this chapter.

(F) "Revenues" means all tolls, service revenues, investment income on special funds, rentals, gifts, grants, and all other moneys coming into the possession of or under the control of the commission by virtue of this chapter, except the proceeds from the sale of bonds. "Revenues" does not include state taxes.

(G) "Public roads" means all public highways, roads, and streets in the state, whether maintained by a state agency or any other governmental agency.

(H) "Public utility facilities" means tracks, pipes, mains, conduits, cables, wires, towers, poles, and other equipment and appliances of any public utility.

(I) "Financing expenses" means all costs and expenses relating to the authorization, issuance, sale, delivery, authentication, deposit, custody, clearing, registration, transfer, exchange, fractionalization, replacement, payment, and servicing of bonds including, without limitation, costs and expenses for or relating to publication and printing, postage, delivery, preliminary and final official statements, offering circulars, and informational statements, travel and transportation, underwriters, placement agents, investment bankers, paying agents, registrars, authenticating agents, remarketing agents, custodians, clearing agencies or corporations, securities depositories, financial advisory services, certifications, audits, federal or state regulatory agencies, accounting and computation services, legal services and obtaining approving legal opinions and other legal opinions, credit ratings, redemption premiums, and credit enhancement facilities.

(J) "Bond proceedings" means the resolutions, trust agreements, certifications, notices, sale proceedings, leases, lease-purchase agreements, assignments, credit enhancement facility agreements, and other agreements, instruments, and documents, as amended and supplemented, or any one or more or any combination thereof, authorizing, or authorizing or providing for the terms and conditions applicable to, or providing for the security or sale or award or liquidity of, bonds, and includes the provisions set forth or incorporated in those bonds and bond proceedings.

(K) "Bond service charges" means principal, including any mandatory sinking fund or mandatory redemption requirements for the retirement of bonds, and interest and any redemption premium payable on bonds, as those payments come due and are payable to the bondholder or to a person making payment under a credit enhancement facility of those bond service charges to a bondholder.

(L) "Bond service fund" means the applicable fund created by the bond proceedings for and pledged to the payment of bond service charges on bonds provided for by those proceedings, including all moneys and investments, and earnings from investments, credited and to be credited to that fund as provided in the bond proceedings.

(M) "Bonds" means bonds, notes, including notes anticipating bonds or other notes, commercial paper, certificates of participation, or other evidences of obligation, including any interest coupons pertaining thereto, issued by the commission pursuant to this chapter.

(N) "Infrastructure fund" means the applicable fund or funds created by the bond proceedings, which shall be used to pay or defray the cost of infrastructure projects recommended by the director of transportation and evaluated and approved by the commission.

(O) "Net revenues" means revenues lawfully available to pay both current operating expenses of the commission and bond service charges in any fiscal year or other specified period, less current operating expenses of the commission and any amount necessary to maintain a working capital reserve for that period.

(P) "Pledged revenues" means net revenues, moneys and investments, and earnings on those investments, in the applicable bond service fund and any other special funds, and the proceeds of any bonds issued for the purpose of refunding prior bonds, all as lawfully available and by resolution of the commission committed for application as pledged revenues to the payment of bond service charges on particular issues of bonds.

(Q) "Service facilities" means service stations, restaurants, and other facilities for food service, roadside parks and rest areas, parking, camping, tenting, rest, and sleeping facilities, hotels or motels, and all similar and other facilities providing services to the traveling public in connection with the use of a turnpike project and owned, leased, licensed, or operated by the commission.

(R) "Service revenues" means those revenues of the commission derived from its ownership, leasing, licensing, or operation of service facilities.

(S) "Special funds" means the applicable bond service fund and any accounts and subaccounts in that fund, any other funds or accounts permitted by and established under, and identified as a "special fund" or "special account" in, the bond proceedings, including any special fund or account established for purposes of rebate or other requirements under federal income tax laws.

(T) "State agencies" means the state, officers of the state, and boards, departments, branches, divisions, or other units or agencies of the state.

(U) "State taxes" means receipts of the commission from the proceeds of state taxes or excises levied and collected, or appropriated by the general assembly to the commission, for the purposes and functions of the commission. State taxes do not include tolls, or investment earnings on state taxes except on those state taxes referred to in Section 5a of Article XII, Ohio Constitution.

(V) "Tolls" means tolls, special fees or permit fees, or other charges by the commission to the owners, lessors, lessees, or operators of motor vehicles for the operation of or the right to operate those vehicles on a turnpike project.

(W) "Credit enhancement facilities" means letters of credit, lines of credit, standby, contingent, or firm securities purchase agreements, insurance, or surety arrangements, guarantees, and other arrangements that provide for direct or contingent payment of bond service charges, for security or additional security in the event of nonpayment or default in respect of bonds, or for making payment of bond service charges and at the option and on demand of bondholders or at the option of the commission or upon certain conditions occurring under put or similar arrangements, or for otherwise supporting the credit or liquidity of the bonds, and includes credit, reimbursement, marketing, remarketing, indexing, carrying, interest rate hedge, and subrogation agreements, and other agreements and arrangements for payment and reimbursement of the person providing the credit enhancement facility and the security for that payment and reimbursement.

(X) "Person" has the same meaning as in section 1.59 of the Revised Code and, unless the context otherwise provides, also includes any governmental agency and any combination of those persons.

(Y) "Refund" means to fund and retire outstanding bonds, including advance refunding with or without payment or redemption prior to stated maturity.

(Z) "Governmental agency" means any state agency, federal agency, political subdivision, or other local, interstate, or regional governmental agency, and any combination of those agencies.

(AA) "Property" has the same meaning as in section 1.59 of the Revised Code, and includes interests in property.

(BB) "Administrative agent," "agent," "commercial paper," "floating rate interest structure," "indexing agent," "interest rate hedge," "interest rate period," "put arrangement," and "remarketing agent" have the same meanings as in section 9.98 of the Revised Code.

(CC) "Outstanding," as applied to bonds, means outstanding in accordance with the terms of the bonds and the applicable bond proceedings.

(DD) "Ohio turnpike system" or "system" means all existing and future turnpike projects constructed, operated, and maintained under the jurisdiction of the commission.

(EE) "Ohio turnpike and infrastructure system" means turnpike projects and infrastructure projects funded by the commission existing on and after July 1, 2013, that facilitate access to, use of, and egress from the Ohio turnpike system, and also facilitate access to and from areas of population, commerce, and industry that are connected to the Ohio turnpike system.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996; 05-06-2005; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.02 Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission.

(A) There is hereby created a commission to be known on and after July 1, 2013, as the "Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission." The commission is a body both corporate and politic, constituting an instrumentality of the state, and the exercise by it of the powers conferred by this chapter in the construction, operation, and maintenance of the Ohio turnpike system, and also in entering into agreements with the department of transportation to pay the cost or a portion of the costs of infrastructure projects, are and shall be held to be essential governmental functions of the state, but the commission shall not be immune from liability by reason thereof. Chapter 2744. of the Revised Code applies to the commission and the commission is a political subdivision of the state for purposes of that chapter. The commission is subject to all provisions of law generally applicable to state agencies which do not conflict with this chapter.

(B)

(1) The commission shall consist of ten members as follows:

(a) Six members appointed by the governor with the advice and consent of the senate, no more than three of whom shall be members of the same political party;

(b) The director of transportation, who shall be a voting member, and the director of budget and management, both of whom shall serve as ex officio members, without compensation;

(c) One member of the senate, appointed by the president of the senate, who shall represent either a district in which is located or through which passes a portion of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system or a district located in the vicinity of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system;

(d) One member of the house of representatives, appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, who shall represent either a district in which is located or through which passes a portion of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system or a district located in the vicinity of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system.

(2) The members appointed by the governor shall be residents of the state, shall have been qualified electors therein for a period of at least five years next preceding their appointment . In making the appointments, the governor may appoint persons who reside in different geographic areas of the state, taking into consideration the various turnpike and infrastructure projects in the state. Members appointed to the commission prior to July 1, 2013, shall serve terms of eight years commencing on the first day of July and ending on the thirtieth day of June. Thereafter, members appointed by the governor shall serve terms of five years commencing on the first day of July and ending on the thirtieth day of June. Those members appointed by the president of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives shall serve a term of the remainder of the general assembly during which the senator or representative is appointed. Each appointed member shall hold office from the date of appointment until the end of the term for which the member was appointed. If a commission member dies or resigns, or if a senator or representative who is a member of the commission ceases to be a senator or representative, or if an ex officio member ceases to hold the applicable office, the vacancy shall be filled in the same manner as provided in division (B)(1) of this section. Any member who fills a vacancy occurring prior to the end of the term for which the member's predecessor was appointed shall, if appointed by the governor, hold office for the remainder of such term or, if appointed by the president of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives, shall hold office for the remainder of the term or for a shorter period of time as determined by the president or the speaker. Any member appointed by the governor shall continue in office subsequent to the expiration date of the member's term until the member's successor takes office, or until a period of sixty days has elapsed, whichever occurs first. A member of the commission is eligible for reappointment. Each member of the commission appointed by the governor, before entering upon the member's duties, shall take an oath as provided by Section 7 of Article XV, Ohio Constitution. The governor, the president of the senate, or the speaker of the house of representatives, may at any time remove their respective appointees to the commission for misfeasance, nonfeasance, or malfeasance in office.

(3)

(a) A member of the commission who is appointed by the president of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives shall not participate in any vote of the commission. Serving as an appointed member of the commission under divisions (B)(1)(c), (1)(d), or (2) of this section does not constitute grounds for resignation from the senate or the house of representatives under section 101.26 of the Revised Code.

(b) The director of budget and management shall not participate in any vote of the commission.

(C) The voting members of the commission shall elect one of the voting members as chairperson and another as vice-chairperson, and shall appoint a secretary-treasurer who need not be a member of the commission. Four of the voting members of the commission constitute a quorum, and the affirmative vote of four voting members is necessary for any action taken by the commission. No vacancy in the membership of the commission impairs the rights of a quorum to exercise all the rights and perform all the duties of the commission.

(D) Each member of the commission appointed by the governor shall give a surety bond to the commission in the penal sum of twenty-five thousand dollars and the secretary-treasurer shall give such a bond in at least the penal sum of fifty thousand dollars. The commission may require any of its officers or employees to file surety bonds including a blanket bond as provided in section 3.06 of the Revised Code. Each such bond shall be in favor of the commission and shall be conditioned upon the faithful performance of the duties of the office, executed by a surety company authorized to transact business in this state, approved by the governor, and filed in the office of the secretary of state. The costs of the surety bonds shall be paid or reimbursed by the commission from revenues. Each member of the commission appointed by the governor shall receive an annual salary of five thousand dollars, payable in monthly installments. Each member shall be reimbursed for the member's actual expenses necessarily incurred in the performance of the member's duties. All costs and expenses incurred by the commission in carrying out this chapter shall be payable solely from revenues and state taxes, and no liability or obligation shall be incurred by the commission beyond the extent to which revenues have been provided for pursuant to this chapter.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 04-05-2001; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.03 Turnpike and infrastructure projects.

In order to remove present and anticipated handicaps and potential hazards on the congested highways in this state, to facilitate vehicular traffic throughout the state, to finance infrastructure projects that improve and enhance mobility in Ohio, and also to promote the agricultural, recreational, tourism, and commercial, industrial, and economic development of the state, and to provide for the general welfare by the construction, improvement, and maintenance of modern express highways embodying safety devices, including without limitation center divisions, ample shoulder widths, longsight distances, multiple lanes in each direction, and grade separations at intersections with other public roads and railroads, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may do the following:

(A) Subject to section 5537.26 of the Revised Code, construct, maintain, repair, and operate a system of turnpike projects at locations that are reviewed by the turnpike legislative review committee and approved by the governor, and in accordance with alignment and design standards that are approved by the director of transportation, and issue revenue bonds of this state, payable solely from pledged revenues, to pay the cost of those projects. The turnpikes and turnpike projects authorized by this chapter are hereby or shall be made part of the Ohio turnpike system.

(B) Provide the infrastructure funds to pay the cost or a portion of the cost of infrastructure projects as recommended by the director of transportation pursuant to a determination made by the commission based on criteria set forth in rules adopted by the commission under section 5537.18 of the Revised Code. A determination by the commission to provide infrastructure funds for an infrastructure project shall be conclusive and incontestable.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.04 Authority and powers of turnpike and infrastructure commission.

(A) The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may do any of the following:

(1) Adopt bylaws for the regulation of its affairs and the conduct of its business;

(2) Adopt an official seal, which shall not be the great seal of the state and which need not be in compliance with section 5.10 of the Revised Code;

(3) Maintain a principal office and suboffices at such places within the state as it designates;

(4) With respect to the Ohio turnpike system and turnpike projects, sue and be sued in its own name, plead and be impleaded, provided any actions against the commission shall be brought in the court of common pleas of the county in which the principal office of the commission is located, or in the court of common pleas of the county in which the cause of action arose if that county is located within this state, and all summonses, exceptions, and notices of every kind shall be served on the commission by leaving a copy thereof at its principal office with the secretary-treasurer or executive director of the commission;

(5) With respect to infrastructure projects only, sue and be sued in its own name, plead and be impleaded, provided any actions against the commission shall be brought in the court of common pleas of Franklin county, and all summonses, exceptions, and notices of every kind shall be served on the commission by leaving a copy thereof at its principal office with the secretary-treasurer or executive director of the commission.

(6) Construct, maintain, repair, police, and operate the turnpike system, and establish rules for the use of any turnpike project;

(7) Issue revenue bonds of the state, payable solely from pledged revenues, as provided in this chapter, for the purpose of paying any part of the cost of constructing any one or more turnpike projects or infrastructure projects;

(8) Fix, and revise from time to time, and charge and collect tolls by any method approved by the commission, including, but not limited to, manual methods or through electronic technology accepted within the tolling industry;

(9) Acquire, hold, and dispose of property in the exercise of its powers and the performance of its duties under this chapter;

(10) Designate the locations and establish, limit, and control such points of ingress to and egress from each turnpike project as are necessary or desirable in the judgment of the commission and of the director of transportation to ensure the proper operation and maintenance of that turnpike project, and prohibit entrance to such a turnpike project from any point not so designated;

(11) Make and enter into all contracts and agreements necessary or incidental to the performance of its duties and the execution of its powers under this chapter, including participation in a multi-jurisdiction electronic toll collection agreement and collection or remittance of tolls, fees, or other charges to or from entities or agencies that participate in such an agreement; the commission also may enter into agreements with retail locations, including deputy registrars, to allow the general public to acquire electronic toll collection devices, commonly known as transponders, from the retail locations for such reasonable fees as are established by the commission;

(12) Employ or retain or contract for the services of consulting engineers, superintendents, managers, and any other engineers, construction and accounting experts, financial advisers, trustees, marketing, remarketing, and administrative agents, attorneys, and other employees, independent contractors, or agents that are necessary in its judgment and fix their compensation, provided all such expenses shall be payable solely from the proceeds of bonds or from revenues of the Ohio turnpike system;

(13) Receive and accept from any federal agency, subject to the approval of the governor, and from any other governmental agency grants for or in aid of the construction, reconstruction, repair, renovation, maintenance, or operation of any turnpike project, and receive and accept aid or contributions from any source or person of money, property, labor, or other things of value, to be held, used, and applied only for the purposes for which such grants and contributions are made;

(14) Provide coverage for its employees under Chapters 4123. and 4141. of the Revised Code;

(15) Fix and revise by rule, from time to time, such permit fees, processing fees, or administrative charges for the prepayment, deferred payment, or nonpayment of tolls and use of electronic tolling equipment or other commission property;

(16) Adopt rules for the issuance of citations either by a policing authority or through administrative means to individuals or corporations that evade the payment of tolls established for the use of any turnpike project;

(17) Approve funding and authorize agreements with the department of transportation for the funding of infrastructure projects recommended by the director of transportation pursuant to the criteria established by rule under section 5537.18 of the Revised Code.

(B) The commission may do all acts necessary or proper to carry out the powers expressly granted in this chapter.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993; 2007 HB119 09-29-2007

5537.05 Construction of grade separations at intersections of turnpike projects.

(A) The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may construct grade separations at intersections of any turnpike project with public roads and railroads, and change and adjust the lines and grades of those roads and railroads, and of public utility facilities, which change and adjustment of lines and grades of those roads shall be subject to the approval of the governmental agency having jurisdiction over the road, so as to accommodate them to the design of the grade separation. The cost of the grade separation and any damage incurred in changing and adjusting the lines and grades of roads, railroads, and public utility facilities shall be ascertained and paid by the commission as a part of the cost of the turnpike project or from revenues or state taxes.

(1) If the commission finds it necessary to change the location of any portion of any public road, railroad, or public utility facility, it shall cause the same to be reconstructed at the location the governmental agency having jurisdiction over such road, railroad, or public utility facility considers most favorable. The construction shall be of substantially the same type and in as good condition as the original road, railroad, or public utility facility. The cost of the reconstruction, relocation, or removal and any damage incurred in changing the location shall be ascertained and paid by the commission as a part of the cost of the turnpike project or from revenues or state taxes.

(2) The commission may petition the board of county commissioners of the county in which is situated any public road or part thereof affected by the location therein of any turnpike project, for the vacation or relocation of the road or any part thereof, in the same manner and with the same force and effect as is given to the director of transportation pursuant to sections 5553.04 to 5553.11 of the Revised Code.

(B) The commission and its authorized agents and employees, after proper notice, may enter upon any lands, waters, and premises in the state for the purpose of making surveys, soundings, drillings, and examinations that are necessary or proper for the purposes of this chapter, and the entry shall not be deemed a trespass, nor shall an entry for those purposes be deemed an entry under any appropriation proceedings which may then be pending, provided that before entering upon the premises of any railroad notice shall be given to the superintendent of the railroad involved at least five days in advance of entry, and provided that no survey, sounding, drilling, and examination shall be made between the rails or so close to a railroad track as would render the track unusable. The commission shall make reimbursement for any actual damage resulting to such lands, waters, and premises and to private property located in, on, along, over, or under such lands, waters, and premises, as a result of such activities. The state, subject to the approval of the governor, hereby consents to the use of all lands owned by it, including lands lying under water, that are necessary or proper for the construction, maintenance, or operation of any turnpike project, provided adequate consideration is provided for the use.

(C) The commission may make reasonable provisions or rules for the installation, construction, maintenance, repair, renewal, relocation, and removal of public utility facilities in, on, along, over, or under any turnpike project. Whenever the commission determines that it is necessary that any public utility facilities located in, on, along, over, or under any turnpike project should be relocated in or removed from the turnpike project, the public utility owning or operating the facilities shall relocate or remove them in accordance with the order of the commission. Except as otherwise provided in any license or other agreement with the commission, the cost and expenses of such relocation or removal, including the cost of installing the facilities in a new location, the cost of any lands, or any rights or interests in lands, and any other rights, acquired to accomplish the relocation or removal, shall be ascertained and paid by the commission as part of the cost of the turnpike project or from revenues of the Ohio turnpike system. In case of any such relocation or removal of facilities, the public utility owning or operating them and its successors or assigns may maintain and operate the facilities, with the necessary appurtenances, in the new location, for as long a period, and upon the same terms, as it had the right to maintain and operate the facilities in their former location.

(D) The commission is subject to Chapters 1515., 6131., 6133., 6135., and 6137. of the Revised Code and shall pay any assessments levied under those chapters for an improvement or maintenance of an improvement on land under the control or ownership of the commission.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993

5537.051 Responsibility for maintenance and repair and replacement of failed grade separations.

(A)

(1) In any county that as of January 1, 2011, had closed one or more roads as a result of grade separation failure at intersections of a turnpike project with a county or township road, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission is responsible for the major maintenance and repair and replacement of failed grade separations. The governmental entity with jurisdiction over the county or township road is responsible for routine maintenance of such failed grade separations.

(2) This section does not apply to any grade separation at intersections of a turnpike project with a county or township road except as described in division (A)(1) of this section.

(3) Major maintenance and repair and replacement of aforementioned failed grade separations shall commence not later than July 1, 2011, and be completed before December 31, 2014.

(B) As used in this section:

(1) "Major maintenance and repair and replacement" relates to all elements constructed as part of or required for a grade separation, including bridges, pile, foundations, substructures, abutments, piers, superstructures, approach slabs, slopes, embankments, fences, and appurtenances.

(2) "Routine maintenance" includes, without limitation, clearing debris, sweeping, snow and ice removal, wearing surface improvements, marking for traffic control, box culverts, drainage facilities including headwalls and underdrains, inlets, catch basins and grates, guardrails, minor and emergency repairs to railing and appurtenances, and emergency patching.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Added by 129th General AssemblyFile No.7, HB 114, §101.01, eff. 6/29/2011.

5537.06 Acquiring and disposing of property.

(A) The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may acquire by purchase, lease, lease-purchase, lease with option to purchase, appropriation, or otherwise and in such manner and for such consideration as it considers proper, any public or private property necessary, convenient, or proper for the construction, maintenance, or efficient operation of the Ohio turnpike system. The commission may pledge net revenues, to the extent permitted by this chapter with respect to bonds, to secure payments to be made by the commission under any such lease, lease-purchase agreement, or lease with option to purchase. Title to personal property, and interests less than a fee in real property, shall be held in the name of the commission. Title to real property held in fee shall be held in the name of the state for the use of the commission. In any proceedings for appropriation under this section, the procedure to be followed shall be in accordance with the procedure provided in sections 163.01 to 163.22 of the Revised Code, including division (B) of section 163.06 of the Revised Code notwithstanding the limitation in that division of its applicability to roads open to the public without charge. Except as otherwise agreed upon by the owner, full compensation shall be paid for public property so taken.

(B) This section does not authorize the commission to take or disturb property or facilities belonging to any public utility or to a common carrier engaged in interstate commerce, which property or facilities are required for the proper and convenient operation of the public utility or common carrier, unless provision is made for the restoration, relocation, replication, or duplication of the property or facilities elsewhere at the sole cost of the commission.

(C) Disposition of real property shall be by the commission in the manner and for the consideration it determines if to a state agency or other governmental agency, and otherwise in the manner provided in section 5501.45 of the Revised Code for the disposition of property by the director of transportation. Disposition of personal property shall be in the manner and for the consideration the commission determines.

(D) Any instrument by which real property is acquired pursuant to this section shall identify the agency of the state that has the use and benefit of the real property as specified in section 5301.012 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-26-1999

5537.07 Bidding process for contracts exceeding $50,000.

(A) When the cost to the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission under any contract with a person other than a governmental agency involves an expenditure of more than fifty thousand dollars, the commission shall make a written contract with the lowest responsive and responsible bidder in accordance with section 9.312 of the Revised Code after advertisement for not less than two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in Franklin county, and in such other publications as the commission determines, which notice shall state the general character of the work and the general character of the materials to be furnished, the place where plans and specifications therefor may be examined, and the time and place of receiving bids. The commission may require that the cost estimate for the construction, demolition, alteration, repair, improvement, renovation, or reconstruction of roadways and bridges for which the commission is required to receive bids be kept confidential and remain confidential until after all bids for the public improvement have been received or the deadline for receiving bids has passed. Thereafter, and before opening the bids submitted for the roadways and bridges, the commission shall make the cost estimate public knowledge by reading the cost estimate in a public place. The commission may reject any and all bids. The requirements of this division do not apply to contracts for the acquisition of real property or compensation for professional or other personal services.

(B) Each bid for a contract for construction, demolition, alteration, repair, improvement, renovation, or reconstruction shall contain the full name of every person interested in it and shall meet the requirements of section 153.54 of the Revised Code.

(C) Other than for a contract referred to in division (B) of this section, each bid for a contract that involves an expenditure in excess of one hundred fifty thousand dollars or any contract with a service facility operator shall contain the full name of every person interested in it and shall be accompanied by a sufficient bond or certified check on a solvent bank that if the bid is accepted a contract will be entered into and the performance of its proposal secured.

(D) Other than a contract referred to in division (B) of this section, a bond with good and sufficient surety, in a form as prescribed and approved by the commission, shall be required of every contractor awarded a contract that involves an expenditure in excess of one hundred fifty thousand dollars or any contract with a service facility operator. The bond shall be in an amount equal to at least fifty per cent of the contract price and shall be conditioned upon the faithful performance of the contract.

(E) Notwithstanding any other provisions of this section, the commission may establish a program to expedite special turnpike projects by combining the design and construction elements of any public improvement project into a single contract. The commission shall prepare and distribute a scope of work document upon which the bidders shall base their bids. At a minimum, bidders shall meet the requirements of section 4733.161 of the Revised Code. Except in regard to those requirements relating to providing plans, the commission shall award contracts following the requirements set forth in divisions (A), (B), (C), and (D) of this section.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Amended by 128th General Assemblych.7, HB 2, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2009.

Effective Date: 04-05-2001; 09-16-2004; 03-23-2005

5537.08 Issuing revenue bonds.

(A) The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may provide by resolution for the issuance, at one time or from time to time, of revenue bonds of the state for the purpose of paying all or any part of the cost of any one or more turnpike projects or infrastructure projects. The bond service charges shall be payable solely from pledged revenues pledged for such payment pursuant to the applicable bond proceedings. The bonds of each issue shall be dated, shall bear interest at a rate or rates or at variable rates, and shall mature or be payable at such time or times, with a final maturity not to exceed forty years from their date or dates, all as determined by the commission in the bond proceedings. The commission shall determine the form of the bonds, including any interest coupons to be attached thereto, and shall fix the denomination or denominations of the bonds and the place or places of payment of bond service charges.

(B) The bonds shall be signed by the chairperson or vice-chairperson of the commission or by the facsimile signature of that officer, the official seal of the commission or a facsimile thereof shall be affixed thereto or printed thereon and attested by the secretary-treasurer of the commission, which may be by facsimile signature, and any coupons attached thereto shall bear the facsimile signature of the chairperson or vice-chairperson of the commission. In case any officer whose signature, or a facsimile of whose signature, appears on any bonds or coupons ceases to be such officer before delivery of bonds, such signature or facsimile shall nevertheless be valid and sufficient for all purposes the same as if the officer had remained in office until such delivery.

(C) Subject to the bond proceedings and provisions for registration, the bonds shall have all the qualities and incidents of negotiable instruments under Title XIII of the Revised Code. The bonds may be issued in such form or forms as the commission determines, including without limitation coupon, book entry, and fully registered form, and provision may be made for the registration of any coupon bonds as to principal alone and also as to both principal and interest, and for the exchange of bonds between forms. The commission may sell such bonds by competitive bid on the best bid after advertisement or request for bids or by private sale in the manner, and for the price, it determines to be for the best interest of the state.

(D) The proceeds of the bonds of each issue shall be used solely for the payment of the costs of the turnpike project or projects for which such bonds were issued, or for the payment of the costs of the infrastructure project or projects as approved by the commission under section 5537.18 of the Revised Code. The proceeds shall be disbursed in such manner and under such restrictions as the commission provides in the applicable bond proceedings.

(E) Prior to the preparation of definitive bonds, the commission may, under like restrictions, issue interim receipts or temporary bonds or bond anticipation notes, with or without coupons, exchangeable for definitive bonds when such bonds have been executed and are available for delivery. The commission may provide for the replacement of any mutilated, stolen, destroyed, or lost bonds. Bonds may be issued by the commission under this chapter without obtaining the consent of any state agency, and without any other proceedings or the happening of any other conditions or things than those proceedings, conditions, or things that are specifically required by this chapter or those proceedings.

(F) Sections 9.98 to 9.983 of the Revised Code apply to the bonds.

(G) The bond proceedings shall provide, subject to the provisions of any other applicable bond proceedings, for the pledge to the payment of bond service charges and of any costs of or relating to credit enhancement facilities of all, or such part as the commission may determine, of the pledged revenues and the applicable special fund or funds, which pledges may be made to secure the bonds on a parity with bonds theretofore or thereafter issued if and to the extent provided in the bond proceedings. Every pledge, and every covenant and agreement with respect thereto, made in the bond proceedings may in the bond proceedings be extended to the benefit of the owners and holders of bonds and to any trustee and any person providing a credit enhancement facility for those bonds, for the further security for the payment of the bond service charges and credit enhancement facility costs.

(H) The bond proceedings may contain additional provisions as to:

(1) The redemption of bonds prior to maturity at the option of the commission or of the bondholders or upon the occurrence of certain stated conditions, and at such price or prices and under such terms and conditions as are provided in the bond proceedings;

(2) Other terms of the bonds;

(3) Limitations on the issuance of additional bonds;

(4) The terms of any trust agreement securing the bonds or under which the same may be issued;

(5) Any or every provision of the bond proceedings being binding upon the commission and state agencies, or other person as may from time to time have the authority under law to take such actions as may be necessary to perform all or any part of the duty required by such provision;

(6) Any provision that may be made in a trust agreement;

(7) Any other or additional agreements with the holders of the bonds, or the trustee therefor, relating to the bonds or the security for the bonds, including agreements for credit enhancement facilities.

(I) Any holder of bonds or a trustee under the bond proceedings, except to the extent that the holder's or trustee's rights are restricted by the bond proceedings, may by any suitable form of legal proceedings, protect and enforce any rights under the laws of this state or granted by the bond proceedings. Those rights include the right to compel the performance of all duties of the commission and state agencies required by this chapter or the bond proceedings; to enjoin unlawful activities; and in the event of default with respect to the payment of any bond service charges on any bonds or in the performance of any covenant or agreement on the part of the commission contained in the bond proceedings, to apply to a court having jurisdiction of the cause to appoint a receiver to receive and administer the revenues and the pledged revenues which are pledged to the payment of the bond service charges on such bonds or which are the subject of the covenant or agreement, with full power to pay, and to provide for payment of, bond service charges on such bonds, and with such powers, subject to the direction of the court, as are accorded receivers in general equity cases, excluding any power to pledge additional revenues or receipts or other income, funds, or moneys of the commission or state agencies to the payment of such bond service charges and excluding the power to take possession of, mortgage, or cause the sale or otherwise dispose of any turnpike project or other property of the commission.

(J) Each duty of the commission and the commission's officers and employees, undertaken pursuant to the bond proceedings, is hereby established as a duty of the commission, and of each such officer, member, or employee having authority to perform the duty, specifically enjoined by law resulting from an office, trust, or station within the meaning of section 2731.01 of the Revised Code.

(K) The commission's officers or employees are not liable in their personal capacities on any bonds issued by the commission or any agreements of or with the commission relating to those bonds.

(L) The bonds are lawful investments for banks, savings and loan associations, credit union share guaranty corporations, trust companies, trustees, fiduciaries, insurance companies, including domestic for life and domestic not for life, trustees or other officers having charge of sinking and bond retirement or other funds of the state or its political subdivisions and taxing districts, the commissioners of the sinking fund of the state, the administrator of workers' compensation, the state teachers retirement system, the public employees retirement system, the school employees retirement system, and the Ohio police and fire pension fund, notwithstanding any other provisions of the Revised Code or rules adopted pursuant thereto by any state agency with respect to investments by them, and are also acceptable as security for the repayment of the deposit of public moneys.

(M) Provision may be made in the applicable bond proceedings for the establishment of separate accounts in the bond service fund and for the application of such accounts only to the specified bond service charges pertinent to such accounts and bond service fund, and for other accounts therein within the general purposes of such fund.

(N) The commission may pledge all, or such portion as it determines, of the pledged revenues to the payment of bond service charges, and for the establishment and maintenance of any reserves and special funds, as provided in the bond proceedings, and make other provisions therein with respect to pledged revenues, revenues, and net revenues as authorized by this chapter, which provisions are controlling notwithstanding any other provisions of law pertaining thereto.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 11-02-1999

5537.09 Refunding bonds.

The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may provide by resolution for the issuance of revenue bonds of the state, payable solely from pledged revenues, for the purpose of refunding any bonds then outstanding, including the payment of related financing expenses and, if considered advisable by the commission, for the additional purpose of paying costs of improvements, extensions, renovations, or enlargements of any turnpike project or any infrastructure project. The issuance of refunding bonds, the maturities and other details thereof, the rights of the holders thereof, and the rights, duties, and obligations of the commission in respect to such bonds shall be governed by the provisions of this chapter insofar as they are applicable and by the applicable bond proceedings.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991

5537.10 Turnpike bonds need not comply with other laws applicable to issuance of bonds.

This chapter provides an additional and alternative method for doing the things and taking the actions authorized by this chapter. This chapter shall be regarded as supplemental and additional to powers conferred by other laws, and shall not be regarded as in derogation of any powers existing on or after September 1, 1949. Except for section 126.11 of the Revised Code, the issuance of bonds under this chapter need not comply with any other law applicable to the issuance of bonds.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.11 Bonds not a debt of state.

(A) The bonds do not constitute a debt, or a pledge of the faith and credit, of the state or of any political subdivision of the state. Bond service charges on outstanding bonds are payable solely from the pledged revenues pledged for their payment as authorized by this chapter and as provided in the bond proceedings. All turnpike and infrastructure revenue bonds shall contain on their face a statement to that effect.

(B) All expenses incurred in carrying out this chapter shall be payable solely from revenues provided under this chapter and from state taxes. This chapter does not authorize the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission to incur indebtedness or liability on behalf of or payable by the state or any political subdivision of the state.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991

5537.12 Trust agreement for security of bonds.

(A) In the discretion of the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission any bonds may be secured by a trust agreement between the commission and a corporate trustee, which may be any trust company or bank having the powers of a trust company within or without the state but authorized to exercise trust powers within this state.

(B) Any trust agreement may pledge or assign the revenues to be received, but shall not convey or mortgage any turnpike project or infrastructure project, any part of a turnpike project or infrastructure project, or any part of the Ohio turnpike system or the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure system. Any such trust agreement or other bond proceedings may contain provisions for protecting and enforcing the rights and remedies of the bondholders that are reasonable and proper and not in violation of law, including covenants setting forth the duties of the commission in relation to the acquisition of property, and the construction, maintenance, repair, operation, and insurance of the turnpike project or projects in connection with which the bonds are authorized, the rates of toll to be charged, and the custody, safeguarding, and application of all moneys, and provisions for the employment or retention of the services of consulting engineers in connection with the construction, maintenance, or operation of the turnpike project or projects. Any bank or trust company incorporated under the laws of this state which may act as depository of the proceeds of bonds or of revenues may furnish such indemnifying bonds or may pledge such securities as are required by the commission. Any such trust agreement may set forth the rights and remedies of the bondholders and of the trustee, may restrict the individual right of action by bondholders as is customary in revenue bond trust agreements of public bodies, and may contain other provisions that the commission considers reasonable and proper for the security of the bondholders. All expenses incurred in entering into or carrying out the provisions of such a trust agreement may be treated as a part of the cost, or of the cost of the operation, of the turnpike project or projects.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993

5537.13 Contracts - bids - tolls - sinking fund - lien of the pledge.

(A) Subject to division (C)(1) of this section and section 5537.26 of the Revised Code, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may fix, revise, charge, and collect tolls for each turnpike project, and contract in the manner provided by this section with any person desiring the use of any part thereof, including the right-of-way adjoining the paved portion, for placing thereon telephone, electric light, or power lines, service facilities, or for any other purpose, and fix the terms, conditions, rents, and rates of charge for such use, provided that no toll, charge, or rental may be made by the commission for placing in, on, along, over, or under the turnpike project, equipment or public utility facilities that are necessary to serve service facilities or to interconnect any public utility facilities.

(B) Contracts for the operation of service facilities shall be made in writing. Such contracts, except contracts with state agencies or other governmental agencies, shall be made with the bidder whose bid is determined by the commission to be the best bid received, after advertisement for two consecutive weeks in a newspaper of general circulation in Franklin county, and in other publications that the commission determines. The notice shall state the general character of the service facilities operation proposed, the place where plans and specifications may be examined, and the time and place of receiving bids. Bids shall contain the full name of each person interested in them, and shall be in such form as the commission requires. The commission may reject any and all bids. All contracts for service facilities shall be preserved in the principal office of the commission.

(C) (1) Except as necessary to comply with covenants in bond proceedings in existence before July 1, 2013, for calendar years 2013 through 2023, the commission shall not increase the toll rates for any class of passenger vehicle as fixed on the effective date of this amendment, when both of the following apply:

(a) The tolls are collected and remitted in accordance with a multi-jurisdiction electronic toll collection agreement; and

(b) The distance traveled is thirty miles or less.

(2) Subject to division (C)(1) of this section, tolls shall be so fixed and adjusted as to provide funds at least sufficient with other revenues of the Ohio turnpike system, if any, to pay:

(a) The cost of maintaining, improving, repairing, constructing, and operating the Ohio turnpike system and its different parts and sections, and to create and maintain any reserves for those purposes;

(b) Any unpaid bond service charges on outstanding bonds payable from pledged revenues as such charges become due and payable, and to create and maintain any reserves for that purpose.

(D) Tolls are not subject to supervision, approval, or regulation by any state agency other than the turnpike and infrastructure commission.

(E) Revenues derived from each turnpike project shall be first applied to pay the cost of maintenance, improvement, repair, and operation and to provide any reserves therefor that are provided for in the bond proceedings authorizing the issuance of those outstanding bonds, and otherwise as provided by the commission . The bond proceedings also shall provide, subject to the provisions of any other applicable bond proceedings, for the pledge of all, or such part as the commission may determine of the pledged revenues and the applicable special fund or funds to the payment of the bond service charges , which pledge may be made to secure the bonds senior or subordinate to or on a parity with bonds theretofore or thereafter issued, if and to the extent provided in the bond proceedings. The pledge shall be valid and binding from the time the pledge is made; the revenues and the pledged revenues thereafter received by the commission immediately shall be subject to the lien of the pledge without any physical delivery thereof or further act, and the lien of the pledge shall be valid and binding as against all parties having claims of any kind in tort, contract, or otherwise against the commission, whether or not those parties have notice thereof. The bond proceedings by which a pledge is created need not be filed or recorded except in the records of the commission. The use and disposition of moneys to the credit of a bond service fund shall be subject to the applicable bond proceedings.

(F) The proceeds of bonds issued for the payment of the costs of infrastructure projects, net of the payment of all financing expenses and deposits into debt service reserves or other special funds as may be required in the applicable bond proceedings, shall be deposited to the infrastructure fund or funds and shall be exclusively used to pay the cost of infrastructure projects approved by the commission, except that income earned by the infrastructure fund may be used by the commission towards the payment of bond service charges.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996

5537.14 Holding and application of moneys.

All moneys received by the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission under this chapter, whether as proceeds from the sale of bonds or as revenues, are to be held and applied solely as provided in this chapter and in any applicable bond proceedings. Such moneys shall be kept in depositories as selected by the commission in the manner provided in sections 135.01 to 135.21 of the Revised Code, insofar as such sections are applicable, and the deposits shall be secured as provided in sections 135.01 to 135.21 of the Revised Code. The bond proceedings shall provide that any officer to whom, or any bank or trust company to which, revenues or pledged revenues are paid shall act as trustee of such moneys and hold and apply them for the purposes thereof, subject to applicable provisions of this chapter and the bond proceedings.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991

5537.15 Protection and enforcement of rights of bondholder and trustees.

Any holder of bonds issued and outstanding under this chapter, or any of the coupons appertaining thereto, and the trustee under any trust agreement, except to the extent the rights given by this chapter may be restricted or modified by the bond proceedings, may by suit, action, mandamus, or other proceedings, protect and enforce any rights under the laws of the state or granted under this chapter or the bond proceedings, and may enforce and compel the performance of all duties required by this chapter or the bond proceedings, to be performed by the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission or any officer of the commission, including the fixing, charging, collecting, and application of tolls.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991

5537.16 Bylaws and rules - disposal of fines.

(A) The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may adopt such bylaws and rules as it considers advisable for the control and regulation of traffic on any turnpike project, for the protection and preservation of property under its jurisdiction and control, for the maintenance and preservation of good order within the property under its control, and for the purpose of establishing owner or operator liability for failure to comply with toll collection rules. The rules of the commission with respect to the speed, use of special engine brakes, axle loads, vehicle loads, and vehicle dimensions of vehicles on turnpike projects, including the issuance of a special permit by the commission to allow the operation on any turnpike project of a motor vehicle transporting two or fewer steel coils, shall apply notwithstanding sections 4511.21 to 4511.24, 4513.34, and Chapter 5577. of the Revised Code. Such bylaws and rules shall be published in a newspaper of general circulation in Franklin county, and in such other manner as the commission prescribes.

(B) Such rules shall provide that public police officers shall be afforded ready access, while in the performance of their official duty, to all property under the jurisdiction of the commission and without the payment of tolls.

(C) No person shall violate any such bylaws or rules of the commission.

(D)

(1) All fines collected for the violation of applicable laws of the state and the bylaws and rules of the commission or moneys arising from bonds forfeited for such violation shall be disposed of in accordance with section 5503.04 of the Revised Code.

(2) All fees or charges assessed by the commission against an owner or operator of a vehicle as a civil violation for failure to comply with toll collection or toll evasion rules shall be revenues of the commission.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991; 03-29-2005; 2007 HB67 07-03-2007; 2007 HB119 09-29-2007

5537.17 Maintenance and repair of turnpike project - restoration or repair of damaged property - cooperation by governmental agencies - bridge inspection - annual audit.

(A) Each turnpike project open to traffic shall be maintained and kept in good condition and repair by the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission. The Ohio turnpike system shall be policed and operated by a force of police, toll collectors, and other employees and agents that the commission employs or contracts for.

(B) All public or private property damaged or destroyed in carrying out the powers granted by this chapter shall be restored or repaired and placed in its original condition, as nearly as practicable, or adequate compensation or consideration made therefor out of moneys provided under this chapter.

(C) All governmental agencies may lease, lend, grant, or convey to the commission at its request, upon terms that the proper authorities of the governmental agencies consider reasonable and fair and without the necessity for an advertisement, order of court, or other action or formality, other than the regular and formal action of the authorities concerned, any property that is necessary or convenient to the effectuation of the purposes of the commission, including public roads and other property already devoted to public use.

(D) Each bridge constituting part of a turnpike project shall be inspected at least once each year by a professional engineer employed or retained by the commission.

(E) On or before the first day of July in each year, the commission shall make an annual report of its activities for the preceding calendar year to the governor and the general assembly. Each such report shall set forth a complete operating and financial statement covering the commission's operations and funding of any turnpike projects and infrastructure projects during the year. The commission shall cause an audit of its books and accounts to be made at least once each year by certified public accountants, and the cost thereof may be treated as a part of the cost of operations of the commission. The auditor of state, at least once a year and without previous notice to the commission, shall audit the accounts and transactions of the commission.

(F) The commission shall submit a copy of its annual audit by the auditor of state and its proposed annual budget for each calendar or fiscal year to the governor, the presiding officers of each house of the general assembly, the director of budget and management, and the legislative service commission no later than the first day of that calendar or fiscal year.

(G) Upon request of the chairperson of the appropriate standing committee or subcommittee of the senate and house of representatives that is primarily responsible for considering transportation budget matters, the commission shall appear at least one time before each committee or subcommittee during the period when that committee or subcommittee is considering the biennial appropriations for the department of transportation and shall provide testimony outlining its budgetary results for the last two calendar years, including a comparison of budget and actual revenue and expenditure amounts. The commission also shall address its current budget and long-term capital plan.

(H) Not more than sixty nor less than thirty days before adopting its annual budget, the commission shall submit a copy of its proposed annual budget to the governor, the presiding officers of each house of the general assembly, the director of budget and management, and the legislative service commission. The office of budget and management shall review the proposed budget and may provide recommendations to the commission for its consideration.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993; 03-29-2005; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.18 Applications for infrastructure project funding.

(A) The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission shall adopt rules establishing the procedures and criteria under which the commission may approve an application received from the director of transportation for infrastructure project funding under division (B) of this section. The rules shall require an infrastructure project to have an anticipated benefit to the system of public highways in the state of Ohio and transportation-related nexus with and relationship to the Ohio turnpike system and the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure system. The criteria included in the rules for determining if an infrastructure project has the required nexus and relationship to the Ohio turnpike system and the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure system and the criteria for approving an application for infrastructure project funding submitted by the director of transportation shall include the following:

(1) A physical proximity of the infrastructure project to and a direct or indirect physical connection between the infrastructure project and the Ohio turnpike system;

(2) The impact of the infrastructure project on traffic density, flow through, or capacity on the Ohio turnpike system;

(3) The impact of the infrastructure project on the Ohio turnpike system toll revenue or other revenues;

(4) The impact of the infrastructure project on the movement of goods and services on or in the area of the Ohio turnpike system; and

(5) The enhancement or improvement by and through the infrastructure project of access to, use of, and egress from the Ohio turnpike system and access to and from connected areas of population, commerce, and industry.

(B) The director of transportation may submit an application to the commission for infrastructure project funding. An application to the commission for infrastructure project funding, as submitted by the director, shall include only infrastructure projects that previously have been reviewed and recommended by the transportation review advisory council pursuant to the selection process followed by the council under Chapter 5512. of the Revised Code. In selecting infrastructure projects for which applications will be made to the commission for infrastructure project funding, the director shall consider the physical proximity of the project to the Ohio turnpike system. Not less than ninety per cent of the total cost of the infrastructure project funding requests submitted by the director of transportation to the commission shall be for infrastructure projects that are at least partially located within seventy-five miles of the Ohio turnpike system.

By rule, the director may establish guidelines under which an application may be made for infrastructure project funding that combines separate projects if the combination of projects is necessary to satisfy any funding threshold required for approval by the transportation review advisory council and the individual projects have a nexus to the Ohio turnpike system and also address a critical public safety concern or have a significant economic impact.

(C) The commission shall evaluate each application for infrastructure project funding submitted under division (B) of this section in accordance with the procedures and criteria established in rules adopted under division (A) of this section. A determination or approval made under this section is conclusive and incontestable.

(D) Nothing in this section shall interfere with the authority of the director of transportation under Chapter 5512. of the Revised Code.

Added by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 01-01-1974

5537.19 Studies of turnpike or infrastructure projects.

The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission shall expend such moneys as the commission considers necessary for studies of any turnpike project or infrastructure project, whether proposed, under construction, or in operation, and may employ consulting engineers, traffic engineers, and any other individuals or firms that the commission considers necessary to properly implement the studies. The cost of the studies may be paid from revenues, eligible state and federal grants, state taxes available to the commission and permitted by law to be spent for such purposes, or the proceeds of bonds.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993

5537.20 Turnpike and infrastructure projects, property, income, and bonds free from taxation.

The exercise of the powers granted by this chapter is in all respects for the benefit of the people of the state, for the increase of their commerce and prosperity, and for the improvement of their health and living conditions, and as the construction, operation, and maintenance of the Ohio turnpike system by the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission constitute the performance of essential governmental functions, the commission, except as provided in division (D) of section 5537.05 of the Revised Code, shall not be required to pay any state or local taxes or assessments upon any turnpike project or infrastructure project funded by it, or upon revenues or any property acquired or used by the commission under this chapter, or upon the income therefrom. The bonds issued under this chapter, their transfer, and the income therefrom, including any profit made on the sale thereof, shall at all times be free from taxation within the state.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993

5537.21 Project continuing to be operated and maintained as toll road.

(A) When bond service charges on all outstanding bonds issued in connection with any turnpike project have been paid or provision for that payment has been made, as provided in the applicable bond proceedings, or in the case of a turnpike project in connection with which no bonds have been issued, the project shall continue to be or be operated, and improved and maintained, by the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission as a part of the Ohio turnpike system and as a toll road, and all revenues received by the commission relating to that project shall be applied as provided in division (B) of this section.

(B) Subject to the bond proceedings for bonds relating to any turnpike project or infrastructure project, tolls relating to a turnpike project as referred to in division (A) of this section shall be so fixed and adjusted such that the aggregate of available revenues relating to that turnpike project are in amounts at least sufficient to pay the costs described in division (C) (2)(a) of section 5537.13 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1993

5537.22 Journal.

All final actions of the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission shall be journalized and such journal shall be open to the inspection of the public at all reasonable times.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 01-23-1963

5537.23 Liberal construction of chapter.

This chapter, being necessary for the welfare of the state and its inhabitants, shall be liberally construed to effect the purposes thereof.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991

5537.24 Turnpike legislative review committee.

(A) There is hereby created a turnpike legislative review committee consisting of six members as follows:

(1) Three members of the senate, no more than two of whom shall be members of the same political party, one of whom shall be the chairperson of the committee dealing primarily with highway matters, one of whom shall be appointed by the president of the senate, and one of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the senate.

Both the senate member who is appointed by the president of the senate and the senate member appointed by the minority leader of the senate shall represent either districts in which is located or through which passes a portion of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system or districts located in the vicinity of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system.

The president of the senate shall make the president of the senate's appointment to the committee first, followed by the minority leader of the senate, and they shall make their appointments in such a manner that their two appointees represent districts that are located in different areas of the state. If the chairperson of the senate committee dealing primarily with highway matters represents a district in which is located or through which passes a portion of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system or a district located in the vicinity of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system, the president of the senate and the minority leader of the senate shall make their appointments in such a manner that their two appointees and the chairperson of the senate committee dealing primarily with highway matters all represent districts that are located in different areas of the state.

(2) Three members of the house of representatives, no more than two of whom shall be members of the same political party, one of whom shall be the chairperson of the house of representatives committee dealing primarily with highway matters, one of whom shall be appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives, and one of whom shall be appointed by the minority leader of the house of representatives.

Both the house of representatives member who is appointed by the speaker of the house of representatives and the house of representatives member appointed by the minority leader of the house of representatives shall represent either districts in which is located or through which passes a portion of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system or districts located in the vicinity of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system.

The speaker of the house of representatives shall make the speaker of the house of representative's appointment to the committee first, followed by the minority leader of the house of representatives, and they shall make their appointments in such a manner that their two appointees represent districts that are located in different areas of the state. If the chairperson of the house of representatives committee dealing primarily with highway matters represents a district in which is located or through which passes a portion of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system or a district located in the vicinity of a turnpike project that is part of the Ohio turnpike system, the speaker of the house of representatives and the minority leader of the house of representatives shall make their appointments in such a manner that their two appointees and the chairperson of the house of representatives committee dealing primarily with highway matters all represent districts that are located in different areas of the state.

The chairperson of the house of representatives committee shall serve as the chairperson of the turnpike legislative review committee for the year 1996. Thereafter, the chair annually shall alternate between, first, the chairperson of the senate committee and then the chairperson of the house of representatives committee.

(B) Each member of the turnpike legislative review committee who is a member of the general assembly shall serve a term of the remainder of the general assembly during which the member is appointed or is serving as chairperson of the specified senate or house committee. In the event of the death or resignation of a committee member who is a member of the general assembly, or in the event that a member ceases to be a senator or representative, or in the event that the chairperson of the senate committee dealing primarily with highway matters or the chairperson of the house of representatives committee dealing primarily with highway matters ceases to hold that position, the vacancy shall be filled through an appointment by the president of the senate or the speaker of the house of representatives or minority leader of the senate or house of representatives, as applicable. Any member appointed to fill a vacancy occurring prior to the end of the term for which the member's predecessor was appointed shall hold office for the remainder of the term or for a shorter period of time as determined by the president or the speaker. A member of the committee is eligible for reappointment.

(C) The turnpike legislative review committee shall meet at least quarterly and may meet at the call of its chairperson, or upon the written request to the chairperson of not fewer than four members of the committee. Meetings shall be held at sites that are determined solely by the chairperson of the committee. At each meeting, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission shall make a report to the committee on commission matters, including but not limited to financial and budgetary matters and proposed and on-going construction, maintenance, repair, and operational projects of the commission.

The committee, by the affirmative vote of at least four of its members, may submit written recommendations to the commission, either at meetings held pursuant to this section or at any other time, describing new turnpike projects or new interchanges located on existing projects that the committee believes the commission should consider constructing.

(D) At least annually the commission shall make a report to the committee of those infrastructure projects approved and paid for by the commission.

(E) The members of the turnpike legislative review committee who are members of the general assembly shall serve without compensation, but shall be reimbursed by the commission for their actual and necessary expenses incurred in the discharge of their official duties as committee members. Serving as a member of the turnpike legislative review committee does not constitute grounds for resignation from the senate or house of representatives under section 101.26 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.25 No expenditures for lobbyist.

(A) Notwithstanding any provision of law to the contrary, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission shall make no expenditure to engage the services of any person to influence either of the following:

(1) Administrative actions or decisions of the governor, the director of any department listed in section 121.02 of the Revised Code, any member of the staff of any public officer or employee listed in this section, the president of the United States, or any federal officer or employee;

(2) Legislation pending in this state or any other state, a subdivision of this state or any other state, or the federal government, including the executive approval or veto of any such pending legislation.

(B) This section shall not be interpreted to prohibit the commission from designating officers or members of the commission, or full-time, permanent employees of the commission, to act as administrative or legislative agents for the commission.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 06-30-1991

5537.26 Change in toll rate structure requires notice and hearing.

(A) Except as provided in division (D) of this section, no increase by the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission in the toll rate structure that is applicable to vehicles operating on a turnpike project shall become effective unless the commission complies with the notice and hearing requirements prescribed in division (B) of this section, and the commission shall not take any action that expands, has the effect of expanding, or will to any degree at any time in the future have the effect of expanding the sphere of responsibility of the commission beyond the Ohio turnpike, unless the commission complies with the notice and hearing requirements prescribed in division (B) of this section.

(B) Not less than ninety days prior to the date on which the commission votes to increase any part of the toll rate structure that is applicable to vehicles operating on a turnpike project, and not less than ninety days prior to the date on which the commission votes to take an action that expands, has the effect of expanding, or will to any degree at any time in the future have the effect of expanding the sphere of responsibility of the commission beyond the Ohio turnpike, the commission shall do both of the following:

(1) Send notice to the governor and the presiding officers and minority leaders of the senate and house of representatives that details the proposed increase to the toll rate structure or the expansion of the sphere of responsibility of the commission beyond the Ohio turnpike, including a description of and a justification for the increase or expansion;

(2) Commence holding public hearings on the proposed increase in the toll rate structure or the proposed action. If the commission is proposing an increase in the toll rate structure that is applicable to vehicles operating on a turnpike project, it shall hold not less than three public hearings in three geographically diverse locations in this state that are in the immediate vicinity of the affected project. If the commission is proposing to take an action that expands, has the effect of expanding, or will to any degree at any time in the future have the effect of expanding the sphere of responsibility of the commission beyond the Ohio turnpike, it shall hold not less than three public hearings in three locations in the immediate vicinity where the expanded responsibilities would arise.

The commission shall hold the third or, if it holds more than three hearings, the last hearing of any set of hearings required to be held under this section not less than thirty days prior to the date on which it votes to increase part of the toll rate structure that is applicable to vehicles operating on a turnpike project or to take an action that expands, has the effect of expanding, or will to any degree at any time in the future have the effect of expanding the sphere of responsibility of the commission beyond the Ohio turnpike.

The commission shall inform the public of all the hearings required to be held under this section by causing a notice to be published in a newspaper of general circulation in the county in which each hearing is to be held, not less than once per week for two weeks prior to the date of the hearing.

(C) If the commission does not comply with the notice and hearing requirements contained in division (B) of this section and votes for an increase in the toll rate structure that is applicable to vehicles operating on a turnpike project, the increase in the toll rate structure shall not take effect, any attempt by the commission to implement the increase in the toll rate structure is void, and, if necessary, the attorney general shall file an action in the court of common pleas of the county in which the principal office of the commission is located to enjoin the commission from implementing the increase. The commission shall not implement any increase until it complies with division (B) of this section.

If the commission does not comply with the notice and hearing requirements contained in division (B) of this section and votes to take an action that expands, has the effect of expanding, or will to any degree at any time in the future have the effect of expanding the sphere of responsibility of the commission beyond the Ohio turnpike, the commission shall not take the proposed action and, if necessary, the attorney general shall file an action in the court of common pleas of the county in which the principal office of the commission is located to enjoin the commission from taking the proposed action. The commission shall not take the proposed action until it complies with the notice and hearing requirements prescribed in division (B) of this section.

(D) Divisions (A) to (C) of this section do not apply to any decrease made to the toll rate structure by the commission. The commission may implement a temporary decrease in the toll rate structure only if it does not exceed eighteen months in duration. Prior to instituting any decrease to the toll rate structure, the commission shall do both of the following:

(1) Not less than five days prior to any public meeting under division (D)(2) of this section, send notice to the governor and the presiding officers and minority leaders of the senate and house of representatives that details the proposed decrease to the toll rate structure;

(2) Hold a public meeting to explain to members of the traveling public the reasons for the upcoming decrease, to inform them of any benefits and any negative consequences, and to give them the opportunity to express their opinions as to the relative merits or drawbacks of each toll decrease. The commission shall inform the public of the meeting by causing a notice to be published in newspapers of general circulation in Cuyahoga, Lucas, Mahoning, Trumbull, Williams, and Summit counties not less than five days prior to the meeting. The commission shall not be required to hold any public hearing or meeting upon the expiration of any temporary decrease in the toll rate structure, so long as it implements the same toll rate structure that was in effect immediately prior to the temporary decrease.

(E) As used in this section, "Ohio turnpike" means the toll freeway that is under the jurisdiction of the commission and runs in an easterly and westerly direction across the entire northern portion of this state between its borders with the state of Pennsylvania in the east and the state of Indiana in the west, and carries the interstate highway designations of interstate seventy-six, interstate eighty, and interstate eighty-ninety.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996; 12-21-2004; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.27 Application by political subdivisions or government agencies for projects.

The Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission, the director of transportation or the director's designee, and another person designated by the governor shall establish a procedure whereby a political subdivision or other government agency or agencies may submit a written application to the commission, requesting the commission to construct and operate a turnpike project within the boundaries of the subdivision, agency, or agencies making the request. The procedure shall include a requirement that the commission send a written reply to the subdivision, agency, or agencies, explaining the disposition of the request. The procedure established pursuant to this section shall not become effective unless it is approved by the commission and by the director or the director's designee and the designee of the governor, and shall require submission of the proposed turnpike project to the turnpike legislative review committee if the project must be approved by the governor.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.28 Payment of costs for projects.

(A) In paying the cost of any turnpike project, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission may issue bonds and bond anticipation notes as permitted by this chapter, and may accept moneys from any source to pay the cost of any portion of the turnpike project, including, but not limited to, the federal government, any department or agency of this state, and any political subdivision or other government agency. Each such project shall be constructed, operated, maintained, and repaired with funds specifically acquired for that project or from excess funds available from any other turnpike project.

(B) As used in this section

"any turnpike project" does not include infrastructure projects. The costs of infrastructure projects approved under section 5537.18 of the Revised Code shall be funded exclusively out of the infrastructure fund or funds.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Effective Date: 10-17-1996; 2006 HB699 03-29-2007

5537.30 Program for the placement of business logos for identification purposes on directional signs within the turnpike right-of-way.

(A) Not later than December 31, 2009, the Ohio turnpike and infrastructure commission shall establish a program for the placement of business logos for identification purposes on directional signs within the turnpike right-of-way.

(B)

(1) The commission shall establish, and may revise at any time, a fee for participation in the business logo sign program. All direct and indirect costs of the business logo sign program established pursuant to this section shall be fully paid by the businesses applying for participation in the program. The direct and indirect costs of the program shall include, but not be limited to, the cost of capital, directional signs, blanks, posts, logos, installation, repair, engineering, design, insurance, removal, replacement, and administration.

(2) Money generated from participating businesses in excess of the direct and indirect costs and any reasonable profit earned by a person awarded a contract to operate, maintain, or market the business logo sign program shall be remitted to the commission.

(3) If the commission operates such a program and does not contract with a private person to operate it, all money collected from participating businesses shall be retained by the commission.

(C)

The program shall permit the business logo signs of a seller of motor vehicle fuel to include on the seller's signs a marking or symbol indicating that the seller sells one or more types of alternative fuel so long as the seller in fact sells that fuel. As used in this division, "alternative fuel" has the same meaning as in section 125.831 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 130th General Assembly File No. 7, HB 51, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2013.

Added by 128th General Assemblych.7, HB 2, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2009.

5537.35 Turnpike rest area flags.

(A) The Ohio turnpike commission shall display the following flags at each rest area that is along the turnpike:

(1) The flag of the United States;

(2) The flag of Ohio;

(3) The flag that depicts the profile of a prisoner of war against the background of a prisoner of war camp watchtower, commonly known as the POW/MIA flag.

(B) In purchasing flags to comply with division (A) of this section, the turnpike commission shall, to the maximum extent possible, conform to the preference requirements of sections 125.09 and 125.11 of the Revised Code and all rules adopted under those sections to ensure the purchase and use of products made in Ohio and the United States.

Added by 129th General AssemblyFile No.165, SB 222, §1, eff. 3/22/2013.

5537.99 Penalty.

(A) Except as provided in division (B) of this section, whoever violates division (C) of section 5537.16 of the Revised Code is guilty of a minor misdemeanor on a first offense; on each subsequent offense such person is guilty of a misdemeanor of the fourth degree.

(B)

(1) Whoever violates division (C) of section 5537.16 of the Revised Code when the violation is a civil violation for failure to comply with toll collection rules is subject to a fee or charge established by the commission by rule.

(2) Whoever violates division (C) of section 5537.16 of the Revised Code in regard to allowable axle or vehicle loads shall be fined in accordance with division (A) of section 5577.99 of the Revised Code.

Amended by 128th General Assemblych.165, HB 2, §101.01, eff. 7/1/2009.

Effective Date: 04-12-1991; 2007 HB119 09-29-2007