Hutchison comes out fighting against tolling existing interstates!

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: August 31, 2007
CONTACT: Geoff Embler or Matt Mackowiak

Sen. Hutchison will “Vigorously Oppose” Any Effort to Toll Existing Highways
Believes Toll Plan is Double Taxation which she Cannot Support

WASHINGTON — U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison today said she would vigorously oppose any effort by the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) to toll existing interstate highways.

“I will vigorously oppose any effort by the State of Texas to buy back existing interstates and convert them into toll roads,” Sen. Hutchison said. “Texans should never have to pay twice for a highway and I will fight any such efforts.”

TxDOT released their legislative agenda in a report called “Forward Momentum” in February which seeks changes in federal law that would allow such buybacks for the purpose of tolling interstate highways, pending approval by local governments.

Sen. Hutchison has long fought against tolling existing interstate highways, and successfully passed an amendment in the 2005 highway bill which would have prevented states from tolling interstate highways that have already been paid for, but House conferees did not agree to it.

“I intend to immediately introduce as free-standing legislation my amendment that the Senate passed in 2005 to specifically prohibit states from tolling existing interstate highways,” Sen. Hutchison said.

Sen. Hutchison is a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, which funds the U.S. Department of Transportation, and is a member of the Senate Republican Leadership.

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