Connecticut House debate on tolls comes up short on votes

HARTFORD —  Proponents of legislation that could lead to tolls on Connecticut’s highways say they don’t have enough votes to pass the bill.

Democratic House Speaker Matt Ritter abruptly ended debate Tuesday after 90 minutes, admitting “we’re going to fall short today … by the narrowest of margins.”

Lawmakers have said they needed one more vote to pass the bill allowing the Department of Transportation to study where to locate electronic toll gantries. The plan required legislative approval.

Democratic Rep. Tony Guerrera says Connecticut desperately needs revenue to fix its aging transportation infrastructure, adding how it “cannot afford to have another bridge collapse, to have a piece of concrete fall on a vehicle.”

But opponents say the congestion mitigation tolls being considered would be too widespread and a financial burden for taxpayers.