Ferry tolls on current ferries could be eliminated and proposed tolls on others never enacted if two lawmakers in Eastern Carolina get their way.
Senator Bill Cook (R-District 1) filed Senate bill - SB 792 this week that would remove mandatory tolls on the three N.C. Ferry routes that currently have a fee. The legislation would also prevent a fee from being added to the four routes that currently do not have a toll.
Senator Norman Sanderson (R-District 2) signed onto the legislation as a co-sponsor.
Cook says, "Even if all the ferry routes were tolled, the revenue would not go far in offsetting the significant cost of running and making capital improvements to the ferry system. There are several other alternatives to ferry tolling such as advertising or concession contracts that can generate much revenue. I will continue to advocate for responsible alternatives to ferry tolling on behalf of the constituents in Senate district 1."
The bill passed first reading in the Senate on Tuesday, May 20, 2014, and was referred to the Senate Transportation Committee for debate.
Both legislators filed similar legislation during the 2013 Legislative Session.
Cook says, "Ferry tolls are the same as tolls on bridges. If you are going to toll ferries, you should toll bridges and we are not tolling them so why toll ferries?"
Over the past several months there have been several hearings about proposed tolls with most of those attending speaking out.