Md. Transportation Officials Propose Toll Hikes

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Mike Schuh joined WJZ Eyewitness News as a general assignment reporter...
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BALTIMORE (WJZ) — Digging deeper into your wallet to drive on Maryland’s toll roads.  The state is talking about raising the tolls on highways, tunnels and bridges.

Mike Schuh shows us how much higher those tolls could go.

For years, the state has put off raising these tolls, but now they need to raise money quickly or it will cost them much more money to borrow money.

For the Harbor crossings, the bump is $1 this year and $1 two years from now.  For the Bay Bridge, it will triple from $2.50 to $5 and then $8.  On I-95 in Cecil County, it will go from $5 to $6 and then $8.

“Everybody’s hard on money right now,” said Heather McDonald.

But regular motorists aren’t the only one who don’t like these increases.  State Senator E.J. Pipkin has many objections.

“The scope of the increase, 300 percent increase, name one working family in Maryland who’s seen a 300 percent increase in their income,” Pipkin said.

“It’s very difficult.  There’s never a good time to do something like this,” said Beverly Swain-Staley, Maryland Transportation Secretary. “Unfortunately, like much of the infrastructure in our country, though, it’s getting to that age…and now is the time when it needs major rehab.  Unfortunately, now is the time that we need to pay for it.”

Commuter fares are also going up, but they will get a discount.

The Toll Authority will hold hearings next month so you can weigh in on the toll hike.

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