Legislative Lawyer Challenges Perdue's Ferry Order

The Legislature's leading staff attorney on constitutional matters says Gov. Beverly Perdue had no legal authority to issue a one-year moratorium on new and increasing tolls for North Carolina's ferry system.

General Assembly bill drafting director Gerry Cohen spoke Thursday to a subcommittee about the executive order Perdue issued last week to stop for now higher rates on three routes already charging fares and fees on two river ferries currently toll-free.

Cohen wrote a memo to transportation budget-writers saying it's his opinion the order has no force or effect because she's bound by the state constitution to enact the budget law containing the tolls. New rates were supposed to begin April 1.

Perdue legislative lobbyist Pryor Gibson said the governor had legal opinions giving her authority to issue the order.

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  • by OBX on Mar 9, 2012 at 11:10 AM
    It would really be nice to go to Ocracoke by way of a bridge, from Out Fall Canal to Ocracoke. Let everyone pay the same!
  • by Sandy on Mar 9, 2012 at 10:50 AM
    Build 3 bridges: Aurora,Minnesott,and Hatteras charge the tolls on the ferries until their is enough money to build a bridge. I bet Dare Co. would build the first bridge with all the money collected. But they don't want to toll Hatteras. I wonder why? Treat everyone the same.
  • by ibxer on Mar 9, 2012 at 08:03 AM
    Let's build a bridge (actually 2...one from Bayview to Aurora and the other from Minnesott to Cherry Branch) and get over it. Problem solved.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Mar 9, 2012 at 06:05 PM in reply to ibxer
      The problem is already solved, drive around! These are not islands!
  • by Anonymous on Mar 9, 2012 at 07:23 AM
    Roy Cooper, is a nice guy, but a democrat to the bone. No matter what is the right thing, he will not buck the governor. He has drank the kool aid. This is not about tolls, taxes or people, this is a power thing.
  • by Marty Location: Jax on Mar 8, 2012 at 07:54 PM
    CB, every gallon of gasoline has a Nc road tax included in the price. So unless you never buy gas, your already paying taxes for every state road in Nc. You may as well get used to it. Those ferry's are the island folks roads. Why should they pay for your and not you theirs?
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Mar 9, 2012 at 04:42 AM in reply to Marty
      Fair enough, but what about the river ferries? There are roads that go around.
    • reply
      by Anonymous on Mar 9, 2012 at 07:24 AM in reply to Marty
      there has been enough money wasted on the Global Transpark (GTP) or good to perdue to build enough bridges that the ferries would be obsolete. Fact
  • by joseph Location: 28560 on Mar 8, 2012 at 07:35 PM
    We are tired of the dem. taking money from working people and giving to people who don't want to work and that includes giving them a way to cross the river on tax payers money.
  • by facts jack on Mar 8, 2012 at 07:34 PM
    Rep. Pat McElraft said on 107.1 FM in an interview on the ferry tolls that if it were up to her Republican colleagues west of I-95, all of eastern NC would still have dirt roads. This transcends party. The crowd up there now has decided they want to punish the east. Wake up folks. If McCrory becomes governor eastern NC will soon look like a third world country.
  • by Jimbo on Mar 8, 2012 at 06:32 PM
    This is about balancing the budget. The ferry dept. should know how much it cost to run a ferry down to a science, for every ferry that is sailing. Then charge to make a profit for a one way ride. Not a few ferries but every ferry.
  • by shark oil on Mar 8, 2012 at 06:11 PM
    Go to Cape May NJ, ride the ferry for 30 minutes, toll $80.00 plus extra for passengers and driver. They come here and ride for joy.
  • by Vet Location: Greenville on Mar 8, 2012 at 06:10 PM
    This isn't about if she "did something for you." This is a matter of the balance of government. One person cannot over-rule the legislature like this. She used her veto power and that was overturned by the legislature. Like it or not that is the way that the system is set up, and for good reason. If you don't like the way the process occured, come out from under your rock during local and state elections and vote. In between voting periods engage your local and state representatives and let your thoughts be known. If don't do these things then stop complaining.
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