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2 Statistics That May Dismantle Ned Lamont’s Argument for Tolls

June 14, 2018 By Staff
2 Statistics That May Dismantle Ned Lamont’s Argument for Tolls

"I think [it] starts with electronic tolling on some of our biggest trucks that are coming in from out of state using our roads, tax free."

Democrat-endorsed candidate for governor Ned Lamont made the case for tolls on Wednesday, arguing that trucks coming in from out of state need to pay for their use of Connecticut roads.

NBC Connecticut‘s Max Reiss reported:

“I think we do need to bring our revenue structure into the 21st century and when it comes to transportation,” Lamont told the group at the Trumbull Marriott. “I need a more reliable and predictable revenue stream that we can leverage and make the investments we need and I think that starts with electronic tolling on some of our biggest trucks that are coming in from out of state using our roads, tax free, creating tons of maintenance issues and we’ll see where it goes from there.”

Focusing on out-of-state drivers, particularly out-of-state trucks, may help spur the political will for tolls among some state leaders. A December 2017 analysis of Gov. Dan Malloy’s (D-Conn.) toll plan, though, suggests most of the burden will fall on in-state drivers and on cars, though, not out-of-state drivers and trucks.

According to the Office of Legislative Research (OLR):

According to the Governor’s Transportation Finance Panel, approximately 30% of tolls would be paid by out-of-state drivers, with a slightly higher percentage (34%) in the major corridors (I-95 and I-84) and a smaller percentage (about 12%) in other locations.

…Again, according to the Transportation Finance Panel, although heavy trucks comprise between 10% and 12% of traffic on the interstates, they would pay about 24% of toll revenue. (Tolls could be set higher for trucks because they cause greater wear and tear of roads and bridges.)

If Lamont is planning to implement the Malloy plan for tolls, he may have to acknowledge that a majority of the burden will fall on Connecticut drivers, and car drivers at that.

If Lamont is proposing a different plan, he may have to let Connecticut voters know what that plan is.