Tolls Take A Toll On The Working People

Published: March 11, 2019 at 12:15 pm


To the Editor,

As a Democrat, I wanted to write to voice my growing displeasure about toll legislation in Hartford. Tolls are another regressive tax against working people. It is a punishment to people who go to work everyday.

Forcing us to hand over our hard-earned (and more often than not, undervalued) pay. It is undeniable that we need to fund and fix our infrastructure. However, extracting the funds from those without any money will not fix our problems. Certain people will point to how inexpensive the cost of a toll is. I would like to point out that, as a working person, the cost of an inexpensive toll would have serious ramifications on my family’s budget. I am glad there are people that are so well-off that they will not feel further squeeze by an additional regressive state tax, but normal working people will further suffer.

There is a common narrative about out-of-staters paying their fair share. This woefully ignores that the top percent within our state are not paying their fair share. How about the elite start to pay their fair share, leaving working people — and their precarious financial situations — alone. Even if we were to accept that tolls are low-cost, it would only be temporary. Toll roads in New York started at a fairly low cost. However, New York highways remained in dire condition because the cost of rebuilding failing infrastructure is beyond a few tolls (not to mention revenues rarely match projections), leading to shortfalls in infrastructure repair, so prices are increased to cover the gaps. Further shortfall, price increase. All this leads to a seemingly endless cycle of toll price increases. Who will pay the increases? Working people. I ask, when will the working class stop being Connecticut’s financial martyrs?

Clinton DePaolo

39 Buttonball Drive, Sandy Hook         March 11, 2019


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