– Rep. Tarah Toohil (R-Luzerne) today expressed caution about Gov. Tom Wolf’s plan to toll interstate highway bridges and the negative impact it could have on economic growth in northeastern Pennsylvania.
The proposal, unveiled Thursday by Secretary of Transportation Yassmin Gramian, would use tolling revenue to fund bridge repairs and replacement, along with other highway infrastructure projects. Among the nine bridges to be tolled are the Nescopeck Creek and Lehigh River bridges along Interstate 80 in Luzerne and Carbon counties.
Toohil issued the following statement regarding the Wolf administration’s bridge tolling plan:
“I have reviewed this plan, and no other county in the state would be as adversely impacted by it as Luzerne County. These proposed toll bridges bookend the county on both ends, east and west.
“This plan has the potential to dramatically impede future job growth in Luzerne County. Five thousand additional jobs have been created in the last five years, with investments made by Amazon, Chewy.com, American Eagle and many others.
“Companies with facilities here can get their products to three-quarters of the nation’s population within eight hours. That has been a huge draw. Will this tolling proposal affect future decisions made by other businesses to locate in our county?
“I understand that the state is trying to raise revenue, but we must question at what cost to our economic development.”
Additional information on the tolling plan is available at penndot.gov
Representative Tarah Toohil
116th Legislative District
Pennsylvania House of Representatives
Contact: Rep. Toohil’s Office