Posted on February 14, 2020 by admin
State Reps. Cara Pavalock-D’Amato (R-77), Whit Betts (R-78) and State Senator Henri Martin (R-31) are asking that the City of Bristol adopt a resolution to oppose the implementation of tolls on Connecticut highways.
As a result of the public outcry against the toll proposals put forth by Governor Lamont and the majority party, Bristol legislators drafted a letter to Mayor Ellen Zoppo-Sassu on Friday, February 7, 2020 asking that the city take immediate action by enacting their own resolution to try to prevent tolls from invading Connecticut highways.
Lawmakers and Governor Lamont are trying to pass a bill that would authorize tolling on trucks. The bill lacks sufficient legal protections to prevent tolls from being expanded to cars in the future.
The legislators noted that based on findings from the US Census Bureau, nearly 50 percent of Bristol’s residents commute 10 miles or more to work daily. The implementation of tolls on Connecticut highways would have an adverse financial impact on Bristol residents who utilize local highways to commute to work.
“Connecticut residents already pay some of the highest taxes in the country. Tolls on trucks would create increased costs that would be passed on to consumers. If tolls are expanded to cars residents would be faced with another tax added onto the already overburdened working class.” said Senator Martin.
The Bristol delegation requested that the Mayor oppose tolls in any form, which would include a “Trucks-Only Toll”, as this proposal would not generate sufficient revenue to keep the Special Transportation Fund (STF) solvent. The legislators base this on the testimony of Governor Lamont’s appointee Melissa McCaw, Secretary of the Office of Policy and Management, who testified before the Appropriations Committee in 2019 that “… a truck-only model is not a sustainable path for the STF” and that the fund ” … could face insolvency by FY 2024.”
“The transportation fund does not have sufficient money to fix our roads and bridges because the legislature has diverted almost $1 billion over the last 20 years.” added Rep. Pavalock-D’Amato.
“From the beginning I have opposed tolls because I believe it’s the first step to tolls for everyone. My position remains the same.” confirmed Rep. Betts.
Reps. Pavalock-D’Amato and Betts can be reached at 860-240-8700 or Cara@housegop.ct.gov and Whit.Betts@housegop.ct.gov and Sen. Martin at 860-240-8800 or Henri.Martin@cga.ct.gov with questions pertaining to any state or local issue.