Hutchison: Texans shouldn't pay twice for highway

Staff Report
The Associated Press

AUSTIN (AP) - A state effort to toll existing interstate highways is drawing more criticism -- this time from a Texas leader in Washington.

U.S. Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison today said she opposes the Texas Department of Transportation plan.

Hutchison says Texans should never have to pay twice for a highway.

TxDOT is lobbying Congress to pass a federal law that would allow the state to "buy back" parts of existing interstates and turn them into toll roads.

State Senator John Carona of Dallas calls it a "dreadful recommendation" and is confident that legislators would overwhelmingly be against such an idea.

Carona says taxpayers have already paid for those roadways.

A TxDOT spokesman notes Texas law would require approval by county commissioners and taxpayers in a referendum.