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(Taunton Gazette)   Massachusetts politicians want toll booths on every major road into the state   (tauntongazette.com) divider line 30
    More: PSA, Massachusetts, Massachusetts Turnpike, Massachusetts Department of Transportation, toll roads, highways  
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5439 clicks; posted to Main » on 07 Jul 2013 at 1:45 PM (1 year ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
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2013-07-07 07:47:37 PM  
1 votes:

Day_Old_Dutchie: Keep it simple.
No annoying tolls, keep using that gasoline tax, it's simple, baked-in the price per gallon and you already have the paper-pushers you need to administer it. It's way less intrusive, and all you'll lose out on the hatred of those that view government as a wasteful, lazy farks that only care about taking care of their peers, and ignore the people that actually create wealth and only pay attention at election time..
Electric cars are much lighter, and don't tear up the roads as much as even a modest gas, propane or diesel-powered vehicle. In addition, if you are using fossil fuel the generate the electricity, the pollution is much less of a hassle to deal with than 1000,000's of cars.  Or, there's relatively pollution-free, wind, tidal and nuclear and Hydro.
Governments need to reward those that don't use fossil fuels, not to soak everyone with tolls. And of course, governments should just stop being so goddamn entitled and greedy.  You boys in suits need to sacrifice too.  (like that would ever happen)


A gas guzzler from the 70s is also much lighter, a lot of the weight in a car comes from all the airbags, sensors, electronics. I don't see how you can pair the engine type to the amount they "tear up the roads". The weather, type of tires, driving skill are much bigger factors. If you had an electric pickup truck with chains on the tires that is going to do a lot more damage. A topic that is pretty much never discussed is the biggest waste of power which is the electricity distribution. If you have a wind farm in the middle of nowhere a lot of that power is going to be lost in the power grid getting it to the consumers.
2013-07-07 06:49:59 PM  
1 votes:
Keep it simple.
No annoying tolls, keep using that gasoline tax, it's simple, baked-in the price per gallon and you already have the paper-pushers you need to administer it. It's way less intrusive, and all you'll lose out on the hatred of those that view government as a wasteful, lazy farks that only care about taking care of their peers, and ignore the people that actually create wealth and only pay attention at election time..
Electric cars are much lighter, and don't tear up the roads as much as even a modest gas, propane or diesel-powered vehicle. In addition, if you are using fossil fuel the generate the electricity, the pollution is much less of a hassle to deal with than 1000,000's of cars.  Or, there's relatively pollution-free, wind, tidal and nuclear and Hydro.
Governments need to reward those that don't use fossil fuels, not to soak everyone with tolls. And of course, governments should just stop being so goddamn entitled and greedy.  You boys in suits need to sacrifice too.  (like that would ever happen)
2013-07-07 05:22:32 PM  
1 votes:

Coastalgrl: italie: Coastalgrl:
If you want people to live in the state, establish reasonable rent rates. $2200 a month for a 1 Bedroom apt is NOT reasonable on ANY salary.

Christ, in the past I've paid half that amount as a mortgage note on a 3 bedroom house.

//There's your problem...etc.

Eh I solved the problem by quitting my job and moving to FL. Which has other issues but my rent is now $650 and stress levels way down. Not the fanciest place Ive lived but certainly not the worst either.

Leaving and taking a 75% paycut was the best decision Ive ever made.


You'll be back.  They always are.  FL is nice until you realize it's Florida.  It has it own Fark tag for a reason.  Unless you;re making Massachusetts sorts of money, FL is a real buzzkill once it sets in.

Totally agree with you and the other poster.  State needs to tell NIMBYs and rich assholes to frak off and build a ton more, denser housing.  The commonwealth is losing the next generation to cheaper states because they can't afford to raise families here, and once the Boomers die off that's going to mean huge economic and tax revenue problems.  We need to keep as many MA educated people here as possible, and the lack of housing is instead driving them away.
2013-07-07 05:12:13 PM  
1 votes:

dasc: A couple points here:

1 It's not like New Hampshire doesn't rape you with their toll on 95.  Oh there's a discount for people who live in NH so yeah it's a scumbag thing for the state to do.  (There's a discount on ez pass and a discount to NH residents to get the pass so yes there is a discount for NH residents.)


I have heard far worse stories about New Hampshires property tax, I saw a lot of people have to move because of changes they would make to your zone, estimated property value and other things.

2  The Big Dig had to be done.  It replaced temporary road surfaces that ended up being used for half a century.  It also did in fact cut down on congestion for about a week before people realized how much easier and nicer it was to be able to drive in verses take the T or live in a hovel.  Even 5 million dollar mansions on the hill are rat and roach infested.  And don't get me started about having to sit next to people on public transportation who smell like pee.

The Big Dig did have to be done, it was your standard government project where the initial estimate is one tenth the final cost. It was a difficult project to bury I-93 while still keeping it running. It was all worth it though for the Ted Williams tunnel!
2013-07-07 04:07:11 PM  
1 votes:

Ambivalence: Dust: They gotta pay for the roads somehow.  It's currently gas taxes in most places that feed money into the maintenance projects, but with the advent of electric cars, they're going to need a new way to support our aging infrastructure.

Do roads get built without being paid for? The roads are already paid for but the government figures they can recoup losses by LEASING toll rights to a private company in exchange for a cut of the loot.

In essence, we the taxpayers are paying twice and some privately owned company (usually) is making a profit off it.


Federal law prohibits states from tolling existing interstates. There are a couple of pilot programs that allow states to charge tolls on interstates that are widened or rehabilitated, but it's a very limited program and so far as I know only Virginia has applied for one of the programs (and I think they later backed out). Now TFA did say the state bill says this tolling would take place only if future Federal rules concerning interstates changes, but I just don't see that happening any time soon.

And yes you are correct, tolling an existing interstate is similar to billing you twice for it, since the initial construction was paid for with gasoline tax money.  It's why there's little push to allow tolls on existing roads from anyone. Also, new technology eliminates the manned toll booths; cameras take snapshots of your license and they send you a bill for the use of the road, or sensors read a transponder in your car and deduct the cost out of a credit or debit card account.
2013-07-07 04:04:06 PM  
1 votes:
Tolls on the Sagamore and Bourne Bridges!

/comes up every few years
//Off-Cape traffic is backed up 25 miles @ 5mph right now
///Enjoy Your Stay!
2013-07-07 03:39:07 PM  
1 votes:

TyrantII: SDRR: soze: gunsmack: I'm sure that all tolls will be spent responsibly on aging infrastructure and not just blown on poorly thought out projects.

/ how's that "big dig" working out?

The Big Dig absolutely transformed the city in a positive way.  The outcome is something for any large public works project to aspire to.  How they financed it (and controlled it) blows.

Yea, don't forget to not skimp on the bolts though.

Would have never happened if the contractor used self-sealing stem bolts...


They traded them for some dirt
2013-07-07 03:36:19 PM  
1 votes:

Mister Peejay: CokeBear: Why not just raise gas taxes? This is a whole lot of infrastructure to collect a bit more money. The infrastructure to collect gas taxes is already there.

Electric cars are such a tiny % of the market, that the revenue loss from missing them would be insignificant, and if more people decide to go electric, or just buy more fuel efficient cars, we all win because air will be cleaner.

Shup with your pesky "logical thinking"!

/fuel taxes need to go up, period


^^^^^THIS^^^^^

Every time this topic comes up I go mental because it causes a huge debate and discussion but EVERYONE misses the point.

Here's the real issue.  TOLLBOOTHS SUCK.  They make the roads inefficient and are a very costly way to collect money.  More than anything though, because toll booths are expensive (in cost, space, and people), you wind up with way fewer exits than make sense.  Mass Pike is a great example.... West of 128 there are 120 miles and only 15 exits.  Major roads and towns get passed right over, places where an exit would automatically go on a free road.  That's serious economic harm that NOBODY ever pays attention to.

Raise the gas tax, fire the tollbooth hacks, and let's end the silliness and get on with fixing the roads.

/Why yes, I do live in west-central MA
//And yes I realize that my kids' kids will be paying tolls on that farking road
2013-07-07 03:33:35 PM  
1 votes:
Toll booths to fund highways? Not news.

You can go to http://www.bostonglobe.com/business/2013/07/05/taxpayer-group-moves-r e in-software-tax/cqHzSqU0fpVWIAHimXtdJK/story.html and read about:

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation wants state legislators to revise a proposed broad new tax on computer design and software services that Governor Deval Patrick would use to pay for transportation improvements.

I'd say they're getting desperate. Why didn't they use the bazillions of our tax dollars to fix up the rest of the state instead of digging a tunnel under Boston?
2013-07-07 03:23:06 PM  
1 votes:

Science_Guy_3.14159: I remember hearing the RI had to get rid of some of it's toll booths because all the possible routes were being tolled which isn't legal


Yes & no, and it's a long story, but I'll try to cut it down.

They replaced the Sakonnet Bridge, a 60 year old bridge that is one of three going to Aquidneck Island (the only one that's a full-fledged highway) and wanted to put tolls on it.  Most everyone on the island (which includes Newport, the state's cash cow) and on the east & north side of the island freaked out, east because they didn't want to pay to go over, and north because they realize once they put it in, EVERYONE would just take the Mount Hope Bridge (which is also the narrowest bridge and the only one that ties directly into town roads).  All of this on top of there being some legal precedent to say they could never put tolls on it anyway.  So they said they'd think about it.

But in the meantime, they already had put up the EZ Pass canopy, and the people who installed it freaked because they didn't want it installed for nothing.  So they're putting a ten cent toll on it starting in August until they figure out what the hell they're doing.  Either way, there will be no actual toll booths, and the state will mail people the bill (based on license plate pics) if they don't happen to have an EZ Pass transponder.

To say the whole situation is a clusterfark would be polite.  And to say Mass doing the same thing would touch off riots would also be an understatement.  They've spent years trying to decentralize Boston to the point that people live in RI and NH, and now they want to completely fark themselves over, all because they're over budget because half the state's cities are on farking welfare and the other half of the budget goes to lining certain pockets.
2013-07-07 02:49:55 PM  
1 votes:

Dust: They gotta pay for the roads somehow.  It's currently gas taxes in most places that feed money into the maintenance projects, but with the advent of electric cars, they're going to need a new way to support our aging infrastructure.


Given the choice between toll roads or GPSing all our cars and taxing us on miles driven I favor toll roads-less invasive form a privacy standpoint.


Of course it would help if highways funds were used for highways and not bike paths or "enhancements" like museums.  Impose a tax on bikes and bike helmets to pay for bike paths.   Also require adults to pay a yearly registration fee on their bicycles.

www.cityofmadison.com
2013-07-07 02:47:15 PM  
1 votes:

Dust: They gotta pay for the roads somehow.  It's currently gas taxes in most places that feed money into the maintenance projects, but with the advent of electric cars, they're going to need a new way to support our aging infrastructure.


I have a good idea. Why don't we have a tax on political speeches and proposed legislation? The tax would be automatically extracted from legislators' bank accounts at the end of each legislative day. We could charge a per-word fee, with an extra fine for speech that is untruthful, misleading, or irrelevant. It would raise money to have up-kept infrastructure, as well as make political speech more honest, direct, and efficient. Win Win.

Why not?
Rat
2013-07-07 02:44:07 PM  
1 votes:
Liberal problems.  Down here in the great state of Texas, we do in fact build toll roads, but the interstates are kept free.  If you're unhappy with the free interstate, there are a few places that have toll only lanes on the interstates that run a little faster.  Why is it we have this figured out?  Oh yeah, we're fiscally conservative.  We also like to drive 85 on our toll roads.

i235.photobucket.com

© flame on
2013-07-07 02:38:37 PM  
1 votes:

gunsmack: I'm sure that all tolls will be spent responsibly on aging infrastructure and not just blown on poorly thought out projects.

/ how's that "big dig" working out?


^This

Orlando for example is comprised entirely of toll roads, some with a toll booth every three miles. The money doesn't go to the roads, all the roads are in horrible condition, it goes to whack projects that always fail in Orlando. I lived there for 15 years.
2013-07-07 02:32:47 PM  
1 votes:

tenpoundsofcheese: No hero tag?
If you can afford a car, you can afford to pay a little bit to use it on the road.


You are the epitome of a dumbass. The tag on the back of the car, the fee paid for the drivers license, the occasional F.U. tax for using the road (i.e. a ticket of some sort, usually accompanied by some serious farking attitude from one of our Boys in Blue), and the embedded gasoline taxes paid at the pump are what we already pay to use our awesome, nationwide PUBLIC TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM (Thank you Pres. Eisenhower).

What, you don't own a car, so you don't feel you should pay those taxes? You don't, so get over it already.
2013-07-07 02:15:12 PM  
1 votes:

gunsmack: soze: gunsmack: I'm sure that all tolls will be spent responsibly on aging infrastructure and not just blown on poorly thought out projects.

/ how's that "big dig" working out?

The Big Dig absolutely transformed the city in a positive way.  The outcome is something for any large public works project to aspire to.  How they financed it (and controlled it) blows.

I was referring more to the 100% cost overrun, subsequent collapse with a fatality.


From a project management perspective, it's very difficult to cost estimate projects that have never been done before so I get the reason for *some*, though not *all*, of the overrun.  The actual waste is quite irritating from a governance perspective, and it's costing us big time in the ability to expand our T lines as was originally proposed.  The Green Line expansion out to Somerville is starting this year though, so that should be really cool.

If I recall, the fatality wasn't a collapse; it was a concrete panel dropping because of an adhesive failure on its boltings.  Yes, quite bad, but not exactly a tunnel collapse.
2013-07-07 02:11:49 PM  
1 votes:

SilentStrider: Who do they think they are, New Jersey?


Nah, you don't have to pay to get INTO New Jersey. Just to get out.
2013-07-07 02:11:32 PM  
1 votes:

Dear Jerk: I-70 and I-35 are partially toll in Kansas, until they are paid for. It is accepted that they will never be paid for.


Good news:  I-80 through Ohio was paid for with tolls in the late 60s.

Bad news:  It's still a toll road.

Good news:  Our Governor declined the opportunity to sell it to a private interest.

Bad news:  The Frogurt contains...
2013-07-07 02:09:23 PM  
1 votes:

headlly: Fine with me.  I live on the NH border and know enough backroads into the state that skipping the RT 3 booths would be no trouble at all.  Love that sweet sweet tax free beer.


The bulk priced monopoly liquor is even better.  I wish MA would tell the middle men distrubtors of this state to take a hike and monopolize their our liquor as well.

Cheaper prices for us, shiatton of revenue for the state.  NH, amusingly enough, proves that capitalism isn't always the answer to efficiency and price.
2013-07-07 02:00:47 PM  
1 votes:
I-70 and I-35 are partially toll in Kansas, until they are paid for. It is accepted that they will never be paid for.
The 18th street expressway was the same deal, until I-635 was built and drivers abandoned 18th street. Suddenly, 18th street bonds were retired.
2013-07-07 02:00:34 PM  
1 votes:
This is the crap you get when the federal government starts cutting back funding.  Look for this to spread.
2013-07-07 01:58:34 PM  
1 votes:

Dust: They gotta pay for the roads somehow.  It's currently gas taxes in most places that feed money into the maintenance projects, but with the advent of electric cars, they're going to need a new way to support our aging infrastructure.


Do roads get built without being paid for? The roads are already paid for but the government figures they can recoup losses by LEASING toll rights to a private company in exchange for a cut of the loot.

In essence, we the taxpayers are paying twice and some privately owned company (usually) is making a profit off it.
2013-07-07 01:58:18 PM  
1 votes:

Smeggy Smurf: leevis: What it means is politicians are planning on spending more money and it has to come from somewhere.

Have a flat tire?  Fark you pay me
Crushed by a DUI driver?  Fark you pay me
Didn't drive today?  Fark you pay me


Works pretty well for NH!

States always get theirs.  The only difference is the way they go about getting it.

In NH it's toll roads, fees up the ass, and a state monopoly on liquor.  Live free or die indeed!  It also helps that most of the lesser populated areas of NH don't look like those of western MA.  Barely any roads or infrastructure to take care of.  If Western MA wants all it's nice roads and relative good connections to civilization, we gotta find a ways to pay for it.
2013-07-07 01:55:50 PM  
1 votes:

Dust: They gotta pay for the roads somehow.  It's currently gas taxes in most places that feed money into the maintenance projects, but with the advent of electric cars, they're going to need a new way to support our aging infrastructure.


It's done in such a way that it specifically impacts inter-state travel, though.  I'm guessing there's also a protectionist element to this, making it more costly to ship goods in from other states.  There was a thing several years ago where one state (either Idaho or Iowa, I forget) tried to ban those semis with a folding point in the middle becuase of the effect their weight had on the roads.  The Supreme Court found that a ban like that was an impermissable barrier to interstate travel and commerce.  This is arguably less intrusive than that ban, but it still amounts to forcing a fee in order to enter or leave the state, so it's likely not going to fly.
2013-07-07 01:55:03 PM  
1 votes:
Fine... The point of toll roads is that they are maintained with little, if any, tax dollars, and the toll pays for the road.

Farm 'em, they want to pull this shiat, then let those non-toll roads that they are changing not get any Federal money. If they want to be exclusionist assholes, then let them have their major source of road income disappear...
2013-07-07 01:55:00 PM  
1 votes:
Good?

Massachusetts infrastructure is in dire need of repairs after a decade of neglect (IE tax cuts that amounted to an average of $125/person/yr).  Now it's going to be even more expensive to fix.  Luckily interest rates are low, but to secure bonds they're going to show better revenue projections.

I know plenty of people living in Providence and NH and commute to Boston every day.  Time to move closer, or pay for all that use.

There's always public transportation.
2013-07-07 01:53:08 PM  
1 votes:

leevis: What it means is politicians are planning on spending more money and it has to come from somewhere.


Have a flat tire?  Fark you pay me
Crushed by a DUI driver?  Fark you pay me
Didn't drive today?  Fark you pay me
2013-07-07 01:50:18 PM  
1 votes:
What it means is politicians are planning on spending more money and it has to come from somewhere.
2013-07-07 01:50:08 PM  
1 votes:
2.bp.blogspot.com
2013-07-07 01:49:58 PM  
1 votes:
Excuse me while I relocate my family's remains from the cemetery there to a more hospitable state that won't extort money from me just go visit them.
 
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