Fiscal Woes Resurrect Talk of Tolls in CT

Transportation officials met this week to discuss the dismal state of funding for transportation issues and how that can be rectified.

While the federal government teeters on the edge of a so-called fiscal cliff, the State of Connecticut stands amidst its own growing financial woes.

That, along with that fact that state highway trust funds are fast running dry, has transportation officials scrambling to find ways to avoid what could be a disaster, the Connecticut Mirror reports.

There are several major transportation projects on the table that lack the necessary funding, and with the financial conditions the way they are on both the state and federal levels, there are no easy answers where that money will come.

One answer officials are considering is bringing back tolls.

A devastating 1983 crash in Stratford on I-95 that killed seven people was the death knell for tolls in Connecticut, but the blistering recession, combined with a reliance on gas taxes that has caused gas prices to skyrocket, has put tolls once again on the table as an option.

Earlier this year, legislators brought up the possibility of bringing back the tolls. While it passed the state Senate, the House was not as supportive and the bill quickly died.

The most recent suggestion coming out of this week's forum has quickly drawn a reaction from residents around Connecticut. One Trumbull Patch reader was quick to come out against it.


What do you think? Is it time to bring back the tolls?

CW December 13, 2012 at 02:04 PM
The transportation funding "crisis" in CT is part of the much larger budget problem for the entire state. We don't really need tolls on the roads - what we need is spending restraint in Hartford. Gilded pensions for public employees are the first thing that should be eliminated to chart a course for fiscal solvency and economic growth.
Susanne Krivit December 13, 2012 at 04:23 PM
The traffic on i95 and The Merritt Parkway is already a disaster. Unless the state can figure out a way not to bring back the huge back-ups caused by the tolls, this is a very bad idea. The air quality problems we have in Fairfield County have been directly linked to the congestion on our highways. The last thing we need is more cars and trucks idling on the roads.
Lorna December 13, 2012 at 05:14 PM
Bingo! That's why killing Super 7 all the way to Danbury was a NIMBY, short-sighted action. We desperately need a major North/South artery in this end of Connecticut. Truckers want to use the Ham-Fish bridge so they don't have to pay the tolls of the TZ or GW as well as face that traffic. How many of them are idling at Rt. 7 traffic lights? How much pollution is generated by other vehicles having to stop and start, versus cruising all the way from Norwalk to Danbury?
Andrew Ziemba December 13, 2012 at 09:03 PM
The free market would create cheaper, smarter, and safer roads. Desires would be met with innovative solutions. Competition would create the highest quality service for the lowest price. Best of all, you would only pay for it if you used it. This means you no longer subsidize every single business that uses roads to transport stuff too.
Someone Who's Way More Awesome Than You December 14, 2012 at 04:10 AM
...Which is why you use an EZ-Pass. And why, if you are really concerned about the environment and smog, you drive an energy-efficient car and use a green EZ-Pass (which costs less too!) Problem solved; you're welcome!


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