Thanks to @cate_long for spotting this one.
December 1, 2012 – The Harris County toll road system is many things: The route to work for thousands of area commuters; a 120-mile colossus of engineering and concrete; and the growing region’s best hope, members of Commissioners Court say, to ease traffic congestion. It also has become a cash cow, collecting nearly $520 million in tolls a year. Arguably, the toll road authority’s most crucial role is that of a bank. Toll revenues have covered a $26.3 million debt for the Harris County-Houston Sports Authority, paid $33.5 million to clear debris and repair roads after Hurricane Ike, sped project approvals with $4.9 million for the county’s Public Infrastructure Department and bridged temporary shortfalls in the county’s general fund.