Senator Kelly Raises Concerns about the Installation of Tolls in Connecticut

May 11, 2017

“Let’s not kid ourselves; the installation of tolls is just another tax on hard-working families”

 HARTFORD, Conn. – Today State Senator Kevin Kelly (R-Stratford) joined fellow legislators and opponents of tolling Connecticut roadways at the state Capitol to explain why tolls are not a realistic solution to the state’s budget problems.

 “I will always remember the tragic accident in Stratford that caused the removal of the tolls on our roads, and that is one of the reasons that I stood with my Republican colleagues and fellow opponents of tolls today to explain why tolls are not the magical fix or a realistic solution to Connecticut’s budget crisis,” said Sen. Kelly. “Let’s not kid ourselves; the installation of tolls is just another tax on hard-working families and that is something that I refuse to support.”

Republican lawmakers explained that studies on tolls in Connecticut thus far are based on toll prices that far exceed tolls in other places by anywhere between 2-4 times the highest rate in the country. These studies do not consider the cost at which people decide to jump off the highway to take other routes. Current studies also do not take into account how out of state drivers could plan routes around Connecticut if toll rates are set too high.

“For years I have spoken out against bringing tolls back to Connecticut and I will continue to do so,” said Sen. Kelly. “Have we not learned that taxing our way out of this fiscal situation will not work?”

“The proponents of tolls demonstrate no responsibility with taxpayer’s current sacrifice for transportation by consistently pilfering the special transportation fund. There is no real reduction in Connecticut’s gas tax,” said Sen. Kelly.

“There has been no study to show if tolls will actually make money after factoring in the fee structure for tolls, construction costs and people’s likelihood of using roadways with tolls,” said Sen. Kelly. “I refuse to put yet another burden on our middle-class families that are struggling to make ends meet, this is yet another flawed idea that will only add to our unsustainable deficits.”

Republican lawmakers urged fellow legislators consider their “Prioritize Progress” transportation funding plan which provides $63 billion for transportation needs over the next 30 years without tolls or new taxes. The transportation funding plan was recently updated as part of the Republican budget proposal released last month. More details are available online at ctsenaterepublicans.com.