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Delegate Tony McConkey proposes bill to reduce Bay Bridge traffic
Annapolis, MD (Feb 13, 2018) – Delegate Tony McConkey has filed House Bill 377 – Chesapeake Bay Bridge -Toll Collection to completely remove the toll booths that slow traffic on the Bay Bridge.
The goal is to improve traffic that on some summer afternoons extends the width of the county from the foot of the bridge all the way to the Prince George’s County line. Traffic would be improved if drivers were not forced to stop at the toll booths. Even the two dedicated EZ pass lanes greatly reduces user speed.
Instead “all electronic tolling” would allow toll collection at regular highway speeds without slowing. “We have the technology to reduce traffic,” says Delegate McConkey, “electronic tolling is available and in use by the Maryland Transit Administration for the Inter County Connector (ICC), and the I-95 Express Lanes North of Baltimore.”
Yet, while the MTA states that it is their plan to convert the Chesapeake Bay Bridge to all electronic tolling, they have yet to commit to a definite timetable and continue to spend millions of dollars each year on the operation and maintenance of the toll booths.
HB 377 would simply move the Bay Bridge up on the list by requiring a conversion by 2028. “The current contract governing the toll booths expires in 2018 and I fear that without the passage of this bill MTA will extend the drudgery of the toll booths for another 20 years when a more efficient and convenient system is available now,” says McConkey.
HB 377 will have its first hearing in the House Environmental and Transportation Committee this Thursday, February 15th in room #250 at 1PM.