Out-of-state drivers should share burden of road repair costs

To the Editor:

The Citizens Transportation Lobby has been encouraged by the Transportation Committee’s recent unanimous vote to place funds intended for road and transit projects in a lock box. It is essential that we effectively wall off these funds from raids by other government for non-transportation expenditures.

While there has been strong resistance to the imposition of tolls collected to underwrite repairs crucial to the maintenance and repair of our roads and bridges, the problem is now becoming dire as income from the federal government and from our state gas tax are both declining.

Out-of-state vehicles and heavy trucks and buses must all be required to share the burden of maintenance. To ensure fairness, these user fees should be assessed by the damage done by vehicles to our roads and bridges. A study done by the General Accounting Office stated that the damage done by one fully loaded eighteen wheeler is equal to the damage caused by 9,600 cars.

If we manage our roads carefully we will be also be able to affect the congestion clogging our highways by charging lower fees during less busy times, thus shifting non-essential travel from peak times.

The time has come for Connecticut to join so many other states in instituting a fair and effective method of keeping traffic moving.

 

Jill Kelly

Carol Leighton

Co-Chairs

Connecticut Citizens Transportation Lobby

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