Connecticut Leaders Hoping For Influx of Transportation Funding From Biden Administration

Gov. Ned Lamont’s unsuccessful push to toll state highways was an unpopular answer to a persistent problem: Connecticut’s transportation fund is drying up. And with no political appetite to revisit tolls, hopes rest on a federal Band-Aid. The Lamont administration lobbied hard to pass some form of a tolls bill during the last two legislative sessions, but the issue proved deeply unpopular. Ultimately, neither Democrat-controlled chamber of the legislature even called the issue for a vote. Immediately after this month’s election, the governor was asked whether he had given up on tolls. He indicated he had no plans to pursue them again when the legislature comes back into session in January. Without a systemic solution, Lamont said that the state would likely look to borrow money to cover some of the cost of supporting the fund. The governor said he does not “love the idea” but with interest rates at historic lows, it makes sense. Earlier this month, Lt. Gov. Susan Bysiewicz said she expected to see an influx of federal funding from the Biden administration to support transportation upkeep, similar to money the state received from the Recovery Act following President Barack Obama’s election.

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