State Bond Commission votes to approve a $10 million study on electronic tolls

HARTFORD --  The State Bond Commission voted Wednesday to approve a study on electronic tolls. Three people voted against the study.

Democratic Governor Dannel P. Malloy said it is necessary for the state of Connecticut. The go-ahead vote followed a lengthy discussion over whether  Malloy should have issued an executive order calling for the $10 million study. Malloy is not seeking re-election and critics, including Republican candidates for governor, said such a study should be left up to the next governor and General Assembly. Most oppose tolls in general.

The study will look into electronic tolling on I-84, I-91, I-95 and the Wilbur Cross and Merritt Parkways and would include how much to charge for the tolls, how to save Connecticut drivers money and how to make sure out-of-state drivers pay their fair share.

Governor Malloy said he has seen a sharp decline in transportation revenue, which is used repair our roads and bridges.

This is a hot button topic for the people of Connecticut who are skeptical about spending $10 million.

“What are they doing with all the tax revenue we are already giving up?, asked Jake Shatkyvich of Middletown. “Look, the more you start holding us up by our freakin’ ankles and shaking every last bit of loose change, it’s like you’re beating a dead horse”\

Malloy said it will take about nine months to find a vendor to conduct the study, likely giving the next administration time to scrap the study.

Malloy argues it makes sense to study electronic tolls and how much money they could generate, considering the state's main transportation account will be unable to pay for many infrastructure expenses in five years.