New Jersey Senate OKs toll road merger plan

| Monday, March 24, 2003

The New Jersey Senate voted to approve a plan to merge the New Jersey Turnpike and the Garden State Parkway, the state announced this week.

The Senate bill, S2352, would enable the Turnpike to assume the operations, facilities and financial obligations of the New Jersey Highway Authority, which operates the Garden State Parkway.

The bill was sponsored by Sens. Nicholas Sacco, Andrew Ciesla and Leonard T. Connors Jr.

The Assembly is expected to take up A3392 following the April budget break. That bill, which also calls for the merger, is sponsored by Assembly members John Wisniewski, Linda Stender, Jack Conners and Jeff Van Drew.

Transportation Commissioner Jack Lettiere said in a statement that the consolidation, if enacted by July, would produce $42 million in savings over the next six years and avert a Parkway toll increase. State officials had said previously that the merger would also enable the state to start work on a high-speed E-ZPass system and make needed repairs to roadways.

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