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(Providence Journal)   Angry resident sets fire to new electronic toll collection equipment. RI relieved that the damages were not significant enough to stop their planned collection of ten cents starting Monday   ( ) divider line
    More: Weird, Sakonnet River, Rhode Island, Sakonnet River bridge, resident set, E-ZPass, equipment, Providence, Kentucky, collections  
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5193 clicks; posted to Main » on 18 Aug 2013 at 10:46 AM (3 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»

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2013-08-18 01:13:01 PM  
Repeal it, let the infrastructure fall down around us.

Tired of you sheep & tired of their systems they put in place to keep their pockets lined.

Same problem really, I say cut the heads off if they don't preform.
2013-08-18 01:15:54 PM  

RightToWork: marsoft: Are things different in the US?  In the UK government workers get paid less than those in the private sector.  Hell, if I did the same job I am doing now for the government I would probably have to take a 70% pay cut.

In the US, it greatly depends on what your profession and qualifications are and whether it it's state or federal employment. In federal employment, everyone with a pulse ends up earning $100k through seniority step increases by the time they're 40, but salaries are pretty much capped at $155k, so if you're in a highly lucrative profession like medicine, corporate law, or investment banking, you'll take a pay cut, engineers will earn about the same, and most of the "humanities" people make out like bandits. For state employment, the biggest determining factor is whether you're in a public union or not - firemen and police make insanely high wages through overtime and fixed-benefit pension compensation, but your average state employee isn't raking it in.

Capped at $155,000 so £99,999 but starting at $100,000 so £63,900?

Seems like the low end is high and the high end is low, strange system.  At least in the UK the low end is low and the high end is low.
2013-08-18 01:20:58 PM  
There are tolls that mostly rely on cameras to do the tolls. A 3% error rate(people who never drove near the tolls) was easily fixed by banning people from disputing the fraud toll in a court of law and forcing people to dispute with the company collecting the toll, which of course ends badly for the victim.

/people getting the transponder for future tracking by the police.
//Just need to eliminate that 'beep' of the unit being read in places where no toll exists.

pay per use hov lane. cost changes per time of day
2013-08-18 01:36:49 PM  

Fano: DIAF, Tollbooth Willie, the dried up stinky, dicklicker. Piss on your dolla ninety-five

Came in here not expecting to see an Adam Sandler toll booth Willie reference. Leaving satisfied and remembering why I love Fark.
2013-08-18 01:59:49 PM  

skinink: Somebody's gonna have to go back and get a shiatlaod of dimes!

I had to wait half a page for that to show up?
2013-08-18 02:22:31 PM  

edmo: After RTFA, it's clear why people are fired up. Instituted now, they've got the green light to raise the toll whenever to whatever and nothing can stop them, NOTHING!

Seriously, more and more taxes for what?

Keeping the bridge up and keeping it from falling in the river..?

Although I applaud this bootstrappy freeloader who apparently thinks everyone else deserves to pay for road/bridge maintenance but him.
2013-08-18 02:42:30 PM  
Rhode Islander here.

The whole "point" of the toll, if you can call it that, is to provide a source of funding for the RI Bridge & Turnpike Authority, a newish quasi-public agency tasked with actually spending the toll revenue on actually maintaining the bridges.

The head of the group recently said that if the 10-cent toll doesn't generate enough money quickly enough, control over the bridges would revert back to the state -- which, based on the history of the Sakonnet Bridge [left to rot until nearly fatal, as previously noted], would potentially be the greater evil.

The resident grief over the toll is basically RI parochialism blinding folks to the long-term value of having money [kept out of the General Assembly's hands, at least directly] to maintain bridges before they need repaid instead of having to replace them wholesale when they're crumbling.

There's also a very real thread of East Bay Republicans angry at "off-island" Democrats upstate coloring this whole thing.

/RI is like 40-by-60-mi.
//proximity breeds more contempt, not less.
2013-08-18 02:42:57 PM  

RightToWork: A bit of context: the 10-cent toll is only a legal stop-gap measure to preserve the state's ability to collect tolls until a much larger toll goes into effect later in the year. So it's not just a 10-cent toll.

A further bit of context: An unholy trinity of organized labor, progressive social interest groups, and overtly corrupt Democrat politicians have been wrecking the economy and culture of Rhode Island for decades. Every year, businesses and productive individuals flee by the thousands in search of jobs and a better standard of living (Rhode Island is one of only two states that has been losing population) while illegal immigrants flood in to fill the void, lured by loosely administered, overly generous welfare benefits. The unemployment rate has been among the highest in the U.S. for 5 years running. You might have heard about the recent 38 Studios fiasco in which the politically appointed "experts" of state's central planning board invested $100 million of taxpayer money into Curt Schilling's video game company, which swiftly went bankrupt, losing the entire investment and dumping the company workforce onto RI unemployment. The Providence corporate tax rate is the highest in the U.S. The state has been ranked dead last for business two years running. A steady cycle of RI politicians is ferried off to Federal prison on corruption charges only to return to pick up where they left off several years later. So you can see why the shrinking productive class of the state - stuck in their financially underwater homes - has become increasing vocal and radicalized.

/Not the arsonist - left Rhode Island three years ago in disgust.
//Understands the frustration

A bit further on this: They actually said recently that if you don't have an EZ-Pass transponder, you were on an honor system to send in your dime.

Think about that for a second.  Number one, if you aren't a local, like, say, most of the Boston area types heading to Newport the easy way, you'll have no idea about it, and if you're a local without a transponder, no one is telling you to do it.  Number two, think about the money going into processing the dime fee for the bridge (postage, handling, processing, etc.), and realize that they were going to do this on a mandatory basis until they realized how dumb it was.

And yes, they do want to put a real toll to get onto the island eventually, but as Rhode Islanders from pretty much all of Newport & Bristol Counties are right to point out, that means you're going to overload the Mount Hope Bridge - which, oh btw, removed their tolls fifteen years ago and aren't allowed to replace them - and anyplace on Route 114 (the road that takes the Mount Hope) with people looking to skip the toll.  Tiverton folks would lose their shiat over that part, as a large chunk of the project involved inconveniencing them for years with random closures/remodels/etc, even moreso than the Portsmouth residents on the island side of the bridge.

It's essentially yet another monumental clusterfark of a public works situation in a state notorious for never having their shiat together on such projects.

\lives 15 minutes from the bridge, but thankfully not in RI
\\very familiar with the entire situation
2013-08-18 02:43:41 PM  
Oops, I meant "before they need repair."
2013-08-18 04:28:34 PM  

keylock71: Having said that, went across the new bridge for the first time yesterday (went to a luau at Fort Adams) and it's a pretty sweet bridge.

Not to threadjack...but my cousin went to that and said they left within 20 minutes because it wasn't really a luau.  Thoughts?
2013-08-18 06:51:26 PM  
I am with the protesters on this one.  Maintenance of bridges, roadways, etc is already being covered by registration/license fees and by the ridiculously high taxes we already pay.  This is an "above and beyond" money grab.  Unfortunately the greed of government knows no bounds.
2013-08-18 07:52:04 PM  
A slight tangent from the main conversation, but who's going to organize the RI Fark party?

/just outside Roger Williams Park
2013-08-18 09:08:48 PM  

marsoft: Here is the thing.

Many people call taxation theft.  These same people also complain about tolls.  Now let us call a toll what it is, payment for using an asset.  In other words a toll is free enterprise, it is capitalism.

My position, you want to use something you have to pay for it one way or another.

The options are:
- Pay for it yourself
- Pay for it via taxation
- Pay for is via taxation (if you are local) and a toll to use it (flexibility here is that people outside of the taxation area pay also)

The comments regarding corruption and such are irrelevant as they would apply equally to a pure taxation model.

The problem here is that the tolls are going to the General Fund, which is not connected to maintenance. If toll roads were private roads built with private money, that would be one thing. If the tolls collected were specifically allocated to the roads/bridges tolled that would be another thing. The problem is that we have neither of those models. We have (in many cases) public roads, built with public money, collecting tolls either for a foreign corporation, or for the General Fund. For example, here in Texas, we pay a gas tax for road maintenance. This tax did not go down when we sold most of our toll roads to the Sintra corporation. We voted against toll roads here in Austin. The city council basically said, "Whoops, we thought you were going to vote for them, and we've already sold them, so too bad." This is not analogous to any of your situations, which would, admittedly, be better than what we have.
2013-08-18 10:12:56 PM  

FriarReb98: keylock71: Having said that, went across the new bridge for the first time yesterday (went to a luau at Fort Adams) and it's a pretty sweet bridge.

Not to threadjack...but my cousin went to that and said they left within 20 minutes because it wasn't really a luau.  Thoughts?

More like a big cook out... There was no pig on a spit or polynesian dancers and the like. a tad disappointing, but I got the tickets for free, the beer was good (All Newport Storm) and it was good people watching.

Gave me a chance to get some shots of the sunset, too.
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