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For whom the tolls toll: Feltes drops the veil

EDITORIAL
December 14. 2017 12:55AM




State Sen. Dan Feltes is a remarkably useful politician.

Holding one of the safest seats in the state, the Concord Democrat gets to say out loud what other liberals are thinking, but afraid to admit publicly.

Speaking at a public hearing this week on the plan to charge drivers up to 50 percent more for driving through New Hampshire tollbooths, Feltes says he supports the hike because, “jobs, jobs, and jobs.”

In his mind, taking more money out of your pocket, and giving it to state bureaucrats creates jobs

How? Through the magic of government.

Higher tolls mean less money for New Hampshire commuters. It also means higher costs for businesses, which in turn pass along those costs to consumers. But the state would have more money to spend on roads, bike paths, and studies on commuter rail.

Feltes, using some form of mathematics previously unknown to the rest of us, says raising toll prices will somehow generate an estimated 16,000 new jobs.

New Hampshire’s five Executive Councilors are planning to vote next week on whether to bring the toll proposal forward. Three have already expressed support. Gov. Chris Sununu should exercise his authority to put an end to this foolishness by declining to bring the toll hike forward.

The Legislature increased the gas tax. Turnpike revenues are rising. There is enough money to fix roads and bridges without higher tolls.


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