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Proposal to add tolls in Connecticut clears its first hurdle

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HARTFORD --  The transportation committee Thursday voted for the first step towards adding tolls to Interstates 95, 91, and 84.

The bill has caused heated debates since its proposal. Supporters for it including the governor said it will help with funding transportation projects and helping with the predicted deficit in the funds.

During an unrelated event, Governor Dannel Malloy said gas taxes just aren’t generating enough revenue to keep up with the state’s highways. Gov. Malloy also added that Connecticut is currently not getting anything from out-of-state drivers who use the highways.

“Maintaining a highway system for 30 percent of the users who don’t contribute at all and then you add people who are driving battery operated cars aren’t contributing at all and if you have a hybrid you’re contributing a lot less,” Malloy said.

Some lawmakers are against the tolls and said most Connecticut residents do not want the tolls. Senator Toni Boucher (R-Wilton), who is the co-chair of the committee said Connecticut, unlike neighboring states, is not in the right financial state to add tolls.

“We are already over taxed and this would be another layer of taxes instead of replacing a current very high gas tax," Boucher said. "The people in our state have already come out anywhere between 60 to 90 percent against tolls because it’s another tax. Other states with tolls have lower taxes or no taxes on car as property."

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