Local Leaders Working To Undo Ferry Rate Increases

Some local leaders say they're working to undo the new proposal to raise the price of riding state ferries, but according to The Washington Daily News, their work might not yield results fast enough.

The paper says both Republican Represenative Bill Cook and Democratic Senator Stan White believe Hurricane Irene's toll on the area makes this a bad time to increase and/or add tolls to ferries.

Although, according to the paper, Representative Cook says it's unlikely that the General Assembly will be able to get anything done before May and the ferry toll increases are scheduled to take effect April 1.

There is another public hearing on the toll issue at 7 p.m. Monday night at the Elks Lodge in Morehead City.

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  • by jokerdog Location: washington on Jan 31, 2012 at 09:57 AM
    a ten dollar fee for the bayview ferry is crazy, the hatteras ferry should charge ten dollars or more. the average working person can not afford to vacation on the outer banks, no yankee will balk at a ten dollar fee
  • by Larry Location: Eastern NC on Jan 30, 2012 at 12:41 PM
    When they started the Global TransPark they added an additional fee on license plates for those people living in the counties it was supposed to help. While the GTP is a failure the idea of taxing those who use it is not a bad idea. Put an additional fee on every plate in NC to cover the cost.
  • by Charles Location: Chocowinity on Jan 30, 2012 at 12:11 PM
    As I have said previously in this forum and others, charging a toll for local residents to ride a ferry is nothing short of highway robbery. We pay our NC income tax. We pay our property tax. We pay our fees for drivers license. We pay our fees for license tags, vehicle registration. We pay the highway use tax on the gasoline. We pay, we pay, we pay. The ferry system is not a guilded special treat, it is an intergal part of the NC highway system and is funded by the taxes and fees we all pay just as all of our roads are. Are we now going to start seperating out small units of our highway system and charge a fee for each use? How about the new bridge(s) in the Newbern area? Why not charge a toll for crossing that? Why not charge a toll for driving from Raliegh to Manteo on the new section of US 64 instead of old 264? Or using the Wilson bypass? How would the residents of those area's react to a toll? Exactly as the resident who use the Bath-Aurora and Minesott-Cherry Point ferrys. not "no" but "_el_ no!". If the highway system requires an increase in funding then that increase should be spread evenly across the State, not raised by picking on small sections one at a time. NC voters would likely reject an across the board increase of taxes and fees, so the politicans are using a "divide and conquer" strategy. Target one group of users and trust in the remainder of the populace to say "well it dosen't affect me" and sit on the side lines, or even cheer because someone else has to pay more for using something they are already paying for, but not themselves. Any toll required of state residents, and especially locals who use these ferry's daily to comute to work would be highway robbery and any elected offical who supports such a toll can expect to face an unhappy electorate in the next election cycle.
  • by taxman Location: wilson on Jan 30, 2012 at 08:57 AM
    No free lunch,no free lunch ! You want to ride the ferry you need to pay the cost ! Enough free riders on the taxpayers dollars ! You want to live on an island you got to pay the cost ! Just like you bring kids into the world you need to support them and raise them proper ! No more free lunch to fools living on a sandbar !
    • reply
      by in reply to taxman on Jan 30, 2012 at 09:23 AM in reply to taxman
      Okay, so if we are going to become a user fee based state, then are people in Western NC supposed to pay extra when their roads need snow removal? Because I sure don't feel like paying for someone stupid enough to live where it snows!
    • reply
      by PCS employee on Jan 30, 2012 at 09:27 AM in reply to taxman
      Over 900,000 people (mostly tourists) ride the Hatteras/Ocracoke ferry annually but the state refuses to charge them $1 to $2 per person to get the $5 million the legislature requires. So instead the working people, commuters like me at PCS and others that work at Cherry Point, who have already paid our fair share of highway taxes through in state fuel purchases are now supposed to pay $10 twice a day to go back and forth to work because the state won't build us a bridge. Yet every time I go to Raleigh or Charlotte they are adding a new bypass or exit ramp, etc. This is the continued rape of the middle class.
      • reply
        by PirateFan on Jan 30, 2012 at 09:49 AM in reply to PCS employee
        AMEN! Couldn't have said it ANY better!
    • reply
      by Ty on Jan 30, 2012 at 11:43 AM in reply to taxman
      There is very little difference between the people riding a ferry to and from work or vacation than you leaving your house and crossing a bridge/overpass (NC taxpayers pay for both!!!). The so called "free lunch" you are talking about is hardly "free". That statement could easily be reversed and aimed at you, example: "No free lunch to the landlocked fools who choose to live in the non coastal communities of NC!" How does that sound? Ignorant, right? Just like your ignorant, not well thought of, comment! Just for you knowledge: not all ferries go to "islands", some of them in question actually cross rivers. Before you commment: Do your homework!!!!
  • by facts jack on Jan 30, 2012 at 08:51 AM
    Bill Cook didn't even attend the ferry meeting in Little Washington. He's just a tool for the new House leadership and what did they do? Well, they sold him down the river by splitting up his district....just like he and they will sell us down the river in regards to our ferries.
  • by ibxer on Jan 30, 2012 at 08:21 AM
    Bill Cook already said that he didn't see why we shouldn't pay tolls just like they do in New Jersey and other states. So why his sudden change in attitude? Maybe he can get his western NC Republican buddies to hold a special 1 a.m. session to undue the ferry toll legislation. Like Republican state representative Pat McElraft said on a radio show 2 weeks ago, "If my colleagues in the western part of the state have it their way, eastern NC would still have dirt roads." Voting for more Republicans means the shift towards Charlotte will continue and then you can kiss your ferries and dredging and hurricane recovery efforts goodbye.
  • by Ty Location: Washington on Jan 30, 2012 at 08:10 AM
    I feel as though the state of NC should keep the rates the same for NC residents and charge out of state tourists more to use the ferry system. NC residents have already contributed to the ferry system by paying taxes all year long. It is not their fault that the funds were not allocated properly. If the tourists want to use our resources, then they should also have to pay additional costs to get to that resource. They don't hesitate charging us with toll roads when we travel through their state!
    • reply
      by Obama Snake Oil co on Jan 30, 2012 at 09:39 AM in reply to Ty
      I agree, that would be fair but you know we cannot ask for a drivers license, that would be profiling......some people might no even show up to use the ferry if you had a license check...in NC....
  • by Anonymous on Jan 30, 2012 at 05:37 AM
    Why would they want to undo the rate increases? Even with the rate increases riding the ferry is a bargain. Try driving from Swan Quarter to Ocracoke and use a fair cost per mile estimate and look at the cost.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Jan 30, 2012 at 06:52 AM in reply to
      I think the main concern here is not the Swan 1/4 - Ocracoke ferry. It's the ones from Bath - Aurora and Minnesott Bch to Cherry Branch. These two ferries carry mostly North Carolina residents that already pay taxes and is going to end up costing the State money instead of making money. Toll the Hatteras-Ocracoke that carries majority out of state tourists!!

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