Toll increase approved by PA Turnpike Commission

Paterniano Del Favero
Luglio 19, 2017

If you thought tolls on the Pennsylvania Turnpike were too high already, 2018 has some bad news in store.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike has announced tolls on the highway will increase 6 percent next year for both E-ZPass and cash customers.

The increase is set to take effect on January 7, 2018.

The most common toll for a passenger vehicle will increase from $1.23 to $1.30 for E-ZPass customers and from $1.95 to $2.10 for cash customers, according to the release.

The release states that the toll increases are required to meet the PTC's funding obligations, which includes funding to the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation and making improvements to the toll-road system.

Auditor General Eugene DePasquale said in a statement issued after the announcement that the increase was something that was predicted by his audit completed about a year ago.

"The Turnpike has some real financial challenges and about $450 million a year that it has to pay to PennDOT". "Unless that gets addressed by the Legislature, the toll increases are going to continue to happen". That, in turn, will cause more toll hikes. "It used to be an affordable trip, but now they are pricing middle-class families out of being able to drive on the turnpike".

Those annual payments, which will will be cut to $50 million starting in 2023, are partly a legacy of aborted plans to toll Interstate 80 in the late 2000s, and partly a reflection of state lawmakers' ongoing failure to fully fund transit and other PennDOT requirements through other revenue streams. The increase was approved by the turnpike commission Tuesday.

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