I hate the idea of toll roads. The entire concept wreaks of…
For almost as long as I’ve lived, my entire time on earth in the Badger State, if anyone merely mentioned toll roads, they were met with massive rounds of laughter and ridicule.
Republicans who control everything in state government are actually seriously discussing toll roads. Polls on tolls suggest, and I’m not buying them BTW, that the public supports them.
MAJOR ITEM NO ONE IS TALKING OR REPORTING ABOUT:
Federal law prohibits states or the federal government from establishing tolls on existing interstate highways. When states expand the system they may receive permission to apply tolls on new lanes.
I have to wonder what impact there would be from construction of new lanes to accommodate tolls.
Someone might want to check into that.
Let’s get real. Why all the talk right now about tolls, and from Republicans of all people?
In a recent column in the West Bend Daily News, Owen Robinson nailed it.
You have to get to the final two paragraphs of a lengthy, but fine column before you get to the true matter at hand that also explains why I vehemently oppose toll roads. Here are those paragraphs:
The reason that Wisconsin Republican politicians are talking about toll roads is because they want to spend more money on transportation and they cannot find the money elsewhere. Wisconsin’s gas tax and registration fee are already well above the national average and the public has no appetite to raise our ranking any higher. State lawmakers could tap the state’s general fund for more money or borrow more, but there is also stiff opposition to those ideas. The idea of toll roads are being floated as another possible option to get more money from taxpayers.
The intractable problem with the transportation budget in Wisconsin is not that there is too little money for our needs. The problem is that politicians want to spend far more than Wisconsinites can afford. Toll roads will not fix that problem. Fiscal restraint and leadership will. Are Wisconsin’s Republicans capable of that anymore?
The entire column is here.