Toll rates to be up to 50 cents a mile in SA

So if San Antonio wasn't awake to the runaway, punitive taxation of toll roads before now, let this article below be a wake-up call...can you afford to pay 50 cents a mile in NEW taxes to get to work? Didn't think so...also consider, do you want the toll tax rates to be in the hands of an unelected board whom taxpayers cannot hold accountable? Do you want this unelected toll authority, RMA, to own these state highways in PERPETUITY versus have these roads revert back to free parts of the state highway system once the improvements are paid for? Well, If your answer to all of the above is 'No,' then you had better start getting involved in nixing these ill-conceived toll schemes...

On March 26, 2012, the San Antonio Bexar County Metropolitan Planning Organization (MPO) voted to take certain segments of 281 & 1604 out of the toll plans and make them non-toll projects. After a seven year long grassroots tax revolt, vigilance finally PAID OFF!

US 281 from Loop 1604 to Stone Oak Pkwy and Loop 1604 from Hwy 90 to Bandera Rd on the west side and from I-10 E to I-35 on the east side will now be done WITHOUT TOLLS. But the remaining portion of Loop 1604 from Bandera Rd. to I-35 will have added 4 added toll lanes (2 each direction) called ‘managed lanes.’ Over 50 toll projects still remain on the books at the MPO at this moment, including adding toll lanes to I-35, I-10, the southern leg of Loop 1604, and tolling most all upgrades to every interchange between these highways.

Can you pay 50 cents PER MILE in tolls?
At it’s Board Meeting April 12, 2012, the Alamo Regional Mobility Authority (RMA) adopted a range of toll rates they plan to charge motorists to use the new managed toll lanes. The RMA will charge from 17 cents up to 50 cents PER MILE -- often the highest rate will be charged during peak hours (or commute hours, when most people need to use the road).

They’re ‘managed’ lanes because this un-elected government bureaucracy wants to ‘manage’ your morning commute and charge you a premium to access these lanes during rush hour.

The tolls may be variable rates that change with time of day and level of traffic on the toll lanes.  If too many people use the lanes, they’ll change the toll in real time to bump cars off the lanes by increasing price.

Government no longer wishes to fix congestion, it wishes to manipulate congestion for profit. These new-fangled toll lanes added to existing, paid for, right-of-way also have non-compete agreements that limit or prohibit the expansion of free lanes/routes surrounding the toll lanes -- guaranteeing congestion on the free routes and forcing us to pay the new tax on driving.

Also, none of these toll projects are toll viable, which means they know up front there won’t be enough projected traffic to pay for the cost of the expansion. Rather than nix the toll project, the RMA plans to SUBSIDIZE the toll lanes by building them with gas taxes and other public money in addition to the toll revenue bonds. But you won’t be able use the lanes without paying ANOTHER tax, a toll. So these toll schemes are DOUBLE TAXATION!

Tolls in perpetuity? Permanent NEW tax on driving
The Texas Legislature passed a bill, HB 1112, in the 82nd session in 2001, that gives RMA’s ownership of these segments of state highways in PERPETUITY. Why would they seek ownership of our state highways in PERPETUITY? Because they want to charge you tolls in PERPETUITY! On October 26, 2009, Terry Brechtel, the Executive Director of the RMA admitted they plan to keep the toll in place in perpetuity, after the improvements are paid for.

Toll rate range approved

By Vianna Davila, San Antonio Express-News

Published 02:38 p.m., Thursday, April 12, 2012

The public got its first preview of the tolls Bexar County drivers might one day pay, after the Alamo Regional Mobility Authority board amended its policies Thursday afternoon to include a range of possible toll rates.

The range, which could be anywhere between 17 and 50 cents per mile, would increase by a certain percentage every year, once a toll road is built and operational.

The board also formally exercised the RMA's right to build tolls on Loop 1604, should those projects ever come to pass.

The decision will not impede the recent proposal by Bexar County Commissioner Kevin Wolff to expand parts of Loop 1604 without tolls; but it ensures the RMA will be in charge of any future toll projects along other parts of the corridor.

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