U.S. Congressman Glenn “GT” Thompson and members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly will be hold a hearing this morning in Clarion, Pennsylvania, to examine PennDOT’s P3 Major Bridge Tolling Proposals.
Among the witnesses testifying are Stephanie Kane, Communications Director for the Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates and Rebecca Oyler, President & CEO, Pennsylvania Motor Truck Association. Yassmin Gramian, Secretary, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation also will testify.
PennDOT has proposed implementing tolls on bridges in nine counties that carry Interstates 78, 79, 80, 81, 83 and 95.
In its letter, Onvo said, “It cannot be overstated how negatively PennDOT’s Major Bridge P-3 program would hurt our company.” If PennDOT implements the bridge tolls, Onvo estimates that business will decline as much as 50 percent or more as customers divert onto non-tolled routes.
If PennDOT implements these bridge tolls, Onvo said customers undoubtedly will divert to secondary, non-tolled routes, completely undermining the very business model that has helped it to serve both motorists and local economies throughout the Commonwealth
Consumers will pay more as businesses are forced to pass on costs in the form of higher prices, and businesses located along newly-tolled interstates will suffer, while those on roads that remain toll-free will not.
Employees will have difficult choices to make if they have to pay a new toll twice a day as they travel to and from work – this may make working prohibitively expensive for some. The bridge tolls represent a daily tax on their ability to travel to and from their place of employment.
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