Bill to Stop Bridge Tolling Plan Passes House

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From Representative David Millard

The House on Tuesday passed legislation to stop PennDOT’s plan to toll nine interstate bridges in Pennsylvania and reassert the Legislature’s oversight of, and community involvement in, any future tolling plans.

The Public Private Partnership (P3) law adopted in 2012 authorized the establishment of such partnerships to assist in funding road and bridge repairs across the Commonwealth. However, the initial approval last fall by the P3 Board of the Pathways Major Bridge P3 Initiative failed to offer any specific information about the proposal, including which bridges would be affected.

Senate Bill 382 would void this proposal and prescribe a more open and transparent process for future P3 projects. Specifically, a detailed analysis would have to be developed prior to any consideration by the P3 board, and a 30-day public comment period would be held following publication of the project in the Pennsylvania Bulletin. Additionally, any P3 project that includes a user fee would require legislative approval. The measure now returns to the Senate for further consideration.