Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV


September 9, 2013

Readers sound off on tolls

— — A selection of reader comments from our Facebook page last week:

On a story about a recommended toll increase, and a poll question asking if tolls should be increased on the West Virginia Turnpike to help finance road construction and maintenance across the Mountain State:

• No! Unless they take out two and stick one before Huntington, one before Morgantown and one before Parkersburg and let everyone feel the crunch and not just southern West Virginia! — Bridgett J.

• Totally agree — Dan W.

• No, when will the northern part of the state pay any tolls? — Drew F.

• Absolutely not. The turnpike commission should be disbanded and the money saved from their salaries put toward roads ... Tamarack should not be supported by highway funds either. Make it a part of an appropriate state agency ... The turnpike is part of the interstate highway system and draws down federal dollars for its repair and upkeep. My question is where the heck does all the toll revenue go? — Ronnie M.

• No! I agree with the first comment! — Tiffany J.

• (Expletive deleted) no! Excuse my language but are you kidding me? They don’t do anything hardly now to fix the turnpike. If they increase it again I’m going to move ... and why is it in only certain parts of the state you pay tolls? It’s crazy. I have a big family so I drive a big truck. I am from Bluefield. I can’t hardly go home because I have to factor in tolls on my trips. I think $2 is enough ... — Sherry S.

• I can travel the back roads. Wouldn’t cost me near the toll fee in gas, and you don’t really save that much time — Bottsie H.

• No way — Robin L.

• No! — Robin S.

• This state nickel and dimes you to death. Lived in North Carolina for a long time and didn’t pay near as much. Plus, this is off topic, but kind of relevant. For living in a coal state, why is the electric as high as it is? We should pay less for electric than non-coal states. It’s like we’re all living in bizarro world — Luke N.

• It costs me $12 round trip in tolls to go to the veterans hospital in Huntington. My friend in Clarksburg goes to the same doctor for free ’cause he lives up north. It’s not fair because we live in the south — Don H.

• No. I agree with the first comment. Plus all the money fixes Raleigh County. What about the rest of us? We pay enough, or I should say too much, now — Tracy T.

• No, we pay out enough money as it is! — Amy B.

• The southern counties have paid the debt for the construction of the toll roads. And Mercer County already gets the short end of leftovers after Kanawha and Raleigh counties. West Virginia has a budget surplus from our taxes. Where is all the income from the lottery program? It says it is for education and such, and the school constantly makes cuts — Robert S.

• No, (tolls) should have been removed years ago as promised when they were installed — Benita N.

• No, but they do need to teach and be more strict on some truckers and their speeds on the turnpike! If we didn’t have to spend so much daily in taxes putting walls back up and doing cleanup of the road from overturned 18-wheelers, we’d have the extra money to keep the roads up! Just saying — Wayne C.

• Let’s not forget, the tolls are supposed to help pay for road maintenance, and from the toll booth in Ghent all the way up to Charleston is probably the worst road to drive on. Bumpy as can be, and having driven it for over a year to get to work in Beckley, it was also the worst for being treated and plowed in the winter. I took the back road more often than not because it was in better shape — Angela S.

• The electric and natural gas car discussion always gets me fired up. The government says “Save the environment and buy economical cars or electric and we’ll provide a tax credit,” but then in the next breath complains about not getting enough tax money at the gas pump and wants to raise taxes in other ways and/or add toll roads to support themselves. Ridiculous — Michael O.

• Surprise, surprise, surprise! — Steven T.

• Add tolls on Interstate 64 from Charleston to Huntington, on Interstate 77 from Charleston to the Ohio line and on Interstate 79 from Charleston to Morgantown to make it fair for everyone in the state to pay their fair share and to raise more revenue — Robert Y.

• And the scenic route is the way I will go to Beckley — Chad E.

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