Thursday, December 16, 2010

Bi-state Bridges authority approves tolls

Sad news today for commuters in Kentucky and Indiana.
The bi-state bridges authority has approved a financing plan that calls for tolls to pay for roughly half of the 4.1 billion dollar bridges project. The move has inspired an opposition group to reach out to the Kentucky General Assembly for help blocking tolls.

The financing plan isn’t yet complete. For example, it doesn’t say which bridges will be tolled, and the authority needs federal approval to toll existing bridges. Shawn Reilly with the group Say No To Bridge Tolls says he’s found a legislator who will sponsor a bill to stop such tolls on the state level.

That could lead to a reworking of the project. Authority members have said they won’t drop any part of the plan to build two new bridges and rework Spaghetti Junction in part because it would require years of studying and planning. But Reilly says a similar project in St. Louis was revised fairly quickly.

“They did not need to do a new environmental impact study and they did not need a new record of decision,” he says. “They worked inside their record of decision. So we can model our project after what they did with the Mississippi River Bridges Project.”
We can't let this happen.

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