Connecticut’s Transportation Strategy Board has some ideas
on easing the problem of congestion on highways in the state.
One of the biggest strategies is to add one lane on
Interstate 95 from Branford to the Rhode Island border. To do it, the board may
look to raise the fuel tax.
Some of the board’s suggestions, outlined in a letter to
Gov. M. Jodi Rell, include adding the additional lane. To pay for the new lane,
the board recommends a 3-cent-per-gallon boost to the fuel tax for each of the
next five years, Hartford’s WFSB TV reported.
By 2011, drivers could be paying as much as 15 cents more
per gallon at the pump.
has offered her own plan to hike the fuel tax for transportation. The
governor’s initiative would raise the tax by 6 cents per gallon over the next
four years, and by another penny in 2014.
Paying higher taxes on fuel is not the only idea being
discussed. The board wants to bring back tolls on all of the state’s major
Despite proposals about high-tech electronic toll systems,
key lawmakers and some administration officials say they doubt that Connecticut
is ready either technically or politically to deal with tolls.
“I don’t think the issue of tolls is ripe as yet,” state
Senate Majority Leader Martin M. Looney, D-New Haven, told the Bristol Press.
The reasons tolls aren’t expected to be at the top of the revenue-raising
agenda include concerns that Connecticut might have to repay hundreds of
million of dollars in federal aid it received after the state eliminated tolls
The multiple complications of tolls appear to be nudging
lawmakers and administration officials in the direction of a fuel tax.
Experts say that a 1-cent increase in the fuel tax would
generate as much as $15 million a year.