Heiner Says He Would Lobby For Low Bridge Tolls

by Gabe Bullard on October 4, 2010

Republican mayoral candidate Hal Heiner says public outcry could force a change in the Ohio River Bridges Project.

Heiner has previously stated his opposition to using tolls over one dollar to finance two new bridges and a reworked Spaghetti Junction. The mayor does not have a direct say in the Ohio River Bridges Authority’s decisions on the project. But Heiner says he would lobby the authority to keep tolls low.

“If it came out tomorrow that it was going to be a $6 round trip to Indiana, there would be a cry that would go up in this community, because it would split our economic region in half. Hopefully the Bridges Authority will hear that cry, but I will be in there advocating, doing everything I can to make sure we find a more affordable way to build that project.”

Heiner also says the Spaghetti Junction rework should be scaled down and the east end bridge should be under construction in the next four years. Democratic candidate Greg Fischer says he opposes excessive tolls, and may support changes to the project once a financing plan is released later this year. Independent Jackie Green favors shelving the project.

Heiner made his comments on WFPL’s State of Affairs Monday.

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{ 2 comments }

David Snell October 4, 2010 at 7:14 pm

Bridges have been the definition of a community good ever since Toqueville came to America. If a community cannot support a bridge, which certainly benefits everyone, without a toll then the community has certainly failed.

Curtis Morrison October 5, 2010 at 6:05 pm

While I appreciate Heiner’s step in this direction, it’s still not where we need to be as a community. ANY TOLL WHATSOEVER will be a barrier to commerce. They threaten to divide Louisville and Southern Indiana like Florida and Cuba after the embargo. Only Kentucky doesn’t have any cigars to barter with.

As for Fischer’s “wait and see” approach, it’s nonsensical. We have learned as a community from the Louisville Arena Authority, how this Authority game works. Mr. Abramson tells us to wait and see while he’s making deals behind the scenes with Ed Glassock like some kind of 1930’s gangster movie. Remember how much more sense the Water Company site made? And who ended up with that property. Rest my case. Now, Fischer tries the same line and expects we won’t notice. Nice.

Tolls for the sake of tolls are STUPID. If anyone wants to see through the propaganda, come to Thursday night’s Bridges Authority Business Meeting at the Brown and Williamson Club in Papa Johns Stadum. Starts at 6 pm, but Say NO to Tolls folks will be out there by 5 pm. It’s an open meeting, but they usually trick the media to leave before they do their real business. (With exception of Gabe Bullard, Marcus Green & Steve Shaw, Jonathan Meador- they stay for the real show.)
Also, bring a recording device. These meetings are THAT dramatic.

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