News Release from Senator Robert Nichols

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 26, 2009
Contact: Alicia Pierce
(512) 463-0103

Nichols' bill to prevent the conversion of existing roads to toll roads passes Senate

Austin — Today, the Texas Senate unanimously passed SB 220 by Sen. Robert Nichols (R-Jacksonville) which prevents the conversion of existing roads into toll roads.

"This bill closes the last loophole for converting a non-tolled road to a tollway," said Nichols. "It will reassure many drivers that the roads they drive on toll free today will be toll free tomorrow."

In current law, a road can be converted to a toll road if approved by local voters even though many roads have regional and statewide use. Nichols stressed the unfairness of making drivers pay for roads that have already been paid for using taxpayer dollars.

"These roads were built with public money for public use," said Nichols.

Under the bill, new lanes added to existing highways may still be tolled, but the number of non-tolled lanes must remain the same.

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