Color me skeptical: Hartford Democrats want tolls, but balk at a revenue "lock box"

 Bridge maintenance as brought to you by    Ct DOT and hartford

Bridge maintenance as brought to you by    Ct DOT and hartford

According to the Democrats pushing for highway tolls, we're passing up $800 million in revenue:" To put that revenue grab in perspective, the same linked-to article says that Massachusetts, a far larger state, collects $434 million in annual toll revenue. So the Democrats have some pretty hefty toll rates in mind.

Furthermore, there's this: "While state voters will have the opportunity in November to vote on an amendment to the Constitution to create a so-called lock box for transit-improvement funding, the issue remains a tough vote for lawmakers who have continued to defeat the proposal in recent years even as the Special Transportation Fund is on track to become insolvent."

There's no question that the state needs money to start maintaining its roads and bridges, but that's because our legislatures have systematically looted the gasoline tax revenues, supposedly earmarked for transportation, and spent it on their social service programs and state employee pension obligations. That, and spending billions on pie-in-the-sky fast trains to nowhere (assuming you agree with me that New Britain is "nowhere". The Democrats' resistance to a proposal to keep toll revenue reserved exclusively to transportation needs says everything you need to know about their plans and intentions for using any new revenue.

And it's not for improved highways.