Wow!! Big GOP tax increases coming locally

Posted in Central Texas, Commentary, Road Issues, Transportation at 10:46 am by wcnews

Since we will not raise the gas tax wherever there are toll roads, this will become the norm, Toll rates going up on three area roads.

Toll rates on three Central Texas tollways will go up 25 percent to 50 percent in January, the Texas Transportation Commission decided Thursday, and drivers will no longer be able to use cash to pay for tolls.

Also Thursday, the commission authorized free tolls for disabled veterans on all of its toll roads, including those in Central Texas. Last month, the American-Statesman reported that despite a 2009 law allowing discount programs for disabled vets, the Texas Department of Transportation and other toll authorities in the state had declined to implement free tolls for vets. Free tolls for veterans will be available on Texas 130, Texas 45 North, Texas 45 Southeast and Loop 1, as well as toll roads in Tyler and near Laredo.

The toll increases and the waiver for disabled vets and Purple Heart and Medal of Honor recipients go into effect Jan. 1. The increases on Texas 130, Texas 45 North and Loop 1 Tollway come two years earlier than projected when TxDOT in 2002 borrowed $2.2 billion to build the three roads. Projections shared with investors showed that tolls on the three roads would remain at their original levels until 2015.

For a driver who travels the entire 3.5 miles of Loop 1 Tollway, the cost using an electronic toll tag will increase from the current 68 cents to $1.02, a 50 percent increase and about 29 cents a mile. On Texas 45 North, which is 13.3 miles long, the toll tag cost would go from $1.36 to $2.04, also a 50 percent increase and about 15.3 cents a mile.

On Texas 130’s 49 miles, the total toll would jump from $5.40 to $6.75, a 25 percent rise and about 13.8 cents a mile.

The unelected Perry appointees are raising taxes on Central Texans considerably.

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