BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Money is scarce in Maryland’s budget and you could end up coming up with the difference.  There are now plans to increase the price of tolls across Maryland.

Andrea Fujii explains how much more you could end up paying.

Driving in Maryland is getting even more expensive and could get even worse with increased tolls.

“That’s horrible,” said one driver.

The Maryland Transportation Authority says it needs another $70 million each year to maintain roads and pay for improvement projects. 

“In order to do that, we are looking at potential toll increases that could go into effect this October,” said Cheryl Sparks, Maryland Transportation Authority.

As of now, there is no clear plan.  However, the secretary has mentioned a 75 cent increase for every toll in Maryland.

“There’s no specific timeframe or toll table being proposed at this time. It’s all concepts.  We’re looking at everything,” Sparks said.

This means some or all tolls could increase.  Another possibility is rates could go up just during peak travel times.  State legislators have considered a bill that would add an extra 10 cents per gallon of gas to help cover the $2 billion budget shortfall.  That bill is still in committee.

When given the choice between paying more for gas or tolls, drivers say they prefer a toll increase.

“I don’t want an increase in either one of those, but I guess I would pick tolls.  I just can’t handle gas going up any more,” said Kirstin Boswell.

“It doesn’t matter if we’re willing or not.  We’re going to have to pay either way.  That’s what it comes down to,” said Eric Bell.

The toll increase would apply to E-ZPass customers, too. 

There are two weeks left in the session to finalize the budget and pass the fuel tax bill.

Comments (17)
  1. Howard says:

    Turned in my E-Z Pass last year. After being charged a monthly fee, It wasn,t worth it. I paid more for a service that I seen people just passing me at the toll. Now this, Whats next ??

  2. Bernard Mc Kernan says:

    Keep your e-z pass. If nothing else, it does allow you to eliminate the long cash lines & when using the tunnels & Key bridge the fare is 60 cents vs two dollars. The monthly fee is offset if you use it daily but it still is a bargain when not having to wait in line. The day is coming soon when all tolls will be collected electronically & you won’t have to deal with gum chewing rude collectors who are having a conversation that is more important than you getting where you are on time.

  3. warren says:

    What did they do with the money on the last toll increase?

  4. Tom says:




  5. Anna Marie says:

    My understanding is that toll takers are paid $25.00 an hour. This is where the problem starts. I find it laughable that taking money, in a booth, is paid such a large amount per hour. The amount of cars that pass through those toll booths everyday has to be mind boggling and each person paying a hefty amount to do so is mind boggling. Somebody is pulling a scam here.

    1. Carol Zimmerman says:

      If toll takers are making $25 hr where is the line for employment and I am in it. It may be taking into considerations all of the perks and insurance they get as a state worker to make it $25 an hr. The scam that is being pulled her in MD (and alot of other states) is the wasteful squandering of revenues on the grossly over paid managerial positions in the state , bonuses, un needed programs etc etc. When our goverments learn to live with in their means as we the people have to do, then we may see some positive results in our government

  6. Mystick says:

    Short on cash? Quit spending money before you go to your boss and demand a raise using veiled threats. Those in charge here, and around the country, don’t seem to understand that.

  7. Realwaytosave says:

    OK so groups of the department of transportation workers spend half their time at work gambling and drinking but now we are going to raise tolls to cover budget shortfalls. Maybe we should fire some of the lazy do nothing city employees to cover the budget.

  8. joe silvestri says:

    what a joke i just love this messed up state we live in im getting out of here asap along with alot of other people they call all this rape the people

  9. Billiam says:

    Remember those O’Malley campaign ads last year that said – Hey Bob, you didn’t raise taxes, but increased fees – so a fee is a tax? Well, it seems as if the worm has turned? Let’s see – increasing tolls, increasing recording of property records and increasing the cost of a vanity plate? Hey Martin OweMalley, are these just fees or taxes? Tell me so I can understand the difference between what you’re doing and what Ehrlich was doing?

  10. J says:

    This article is misleading and seems more concerned at creating a stir rather than reporting the facts. MD has two seperate highway administrations. One that is toll financed and one that is tax payer financed. The Toll financed portion uses tolls to run their portions of the Bridges, roads, and Tunnels. This article just makes it seem that its all connected and it mentions the General Assembly session ending in 2 weeks. What does that have to do with anything? The General Assembly doesnt’ vote on the toll increase. The Board that runs the Maryland Transportation Authority can increase the toll on their own based on what they need. The Maryland Tranportation Authority has been floating the loans on several road projects, that’s what has kept the tolls as the cheapest in the region, but now those loans are coming due. Plus that and the aging toll plaza’s and roads will lead to an increase. This article just makes it seem like this is another politician trying to tax us and use our money for something else. It’s not. Tolls fund toll roads. Taxes fund all other roads. They are not the same.

    1. Billiam says:

      So does it really matter who or what authority or assembly or bureaucratic administration authorizes the tolls? Am I supposed to fel better because the General Assembly doesn’t vote on the increase? Either way, someone is going to give the blessing to okay the increase.

      1. J says:

        You are right, either way someone is going to give the okay for the increase. Which we’ve known for years has been coming. Since toll roads are only funded by tolls, did we really expect those tolls to remain as cheap as they are forever. The cost to do business goes up every year, but the tolls have remained the same for a long time. It was only a matter of time. Even with the increase, we will still have cheap tolls compared to a lot of our neighbors.

  11. O'Malley says:

    Work harder! Illegals…I mean “New Americans” need their social benefits!

  12. M says:

    Is there a need for two separate highway administrations? Maybe it wouldn’t seem as upsetting if taxpayers actually saw an improvement in roads, tolls, etc. There never is any accountability on the government’s part.

  13. ew the people says:

    this is what point do they think any of us have extra money ? i am just waiting for the war between the people and the goverment………….

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