A bill that would eliminate building toll lanes on existing free interstate highways was shot down in a committee in the Florida House. It was voted down 8 to 6 in a House transportation committee, after passing through a similar committee in the state Senate.
It could doom the bill, which was introduced in the Senate by Miami Republican Frank Artiles. Artiles says the state Department of Transportation is claiming it will cost the state $1.7 billion over 10 years, or $170 million per year. He calls that inaccurate, saying abolishing tolls would cost $53 million a year.
One of the projects that would have been affected is TBX, which is a series of toll express lanes that would be tacked on to Interstates 275 and 4 flowing into downtown Tampa.
A similar bill has passed a committee in the state Senate.