Illinois Governor's Plan Would Phase Out Tolls

March 30, 2001

SHARING TOOLS        | Print Subscribe
Illinois Gov. George Ryan last week announced a plan that would increase tolls in the short term in exchange for getting rid of toll booths in the long term.

The plan would extend I-355 south into Will County, helping ease Chicago commuter traffic. It would temporarily raise tolls at booths closer to Chicago, gradually eliminating toll plazas further away from the city. By 2021, Ryans' plan would eliminate all toll plazas.
Ryan's plan also calls for the state Department of Transportation to take over the tollways in 2005. This would allow the state Legislature to oversee the toll road budget. Right now, the Illinois State Toll Highway Authority can raise and spend money without oversight from the Legislature or the governor.
Critics of the proposal said that instead of raising tolls, the governor should get rid of the Toll Highway Authority immediately in order to cut the expenses of its management and overhead.
Before Ryan's plan can be put into effect, the General Assembly has to agree to restructure more than $800 million in tollway debt.

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