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Tax Hike Hearing Held in Springfield

mass tollsSPRINGFIELD, Mass (WGGB) —  People voiced their concerns about tolls coming back to western Massachusetts on the Masspike.

The public meeting was held at the MassMutual Center in Springfield Thursday night.

Starting October 15th — it will cost you $1.75 to travel between exits one and six on the Masspike. Currently that trip is free, as it is for all other travel between exits one and six.

Many people at the meeting expressed concerns about the hike, saying between a recent gas tax and these increases, drivers are being stretched too thin.  Others were angry that the public hearing is being held after the toll increases have already been signed into law by the Legislature.

“I was wondering if the public is wasting their time going to these meetings when the state has already made up their opinion on it,” Tom Walling of Wilbraham said.

“We are going to make a summary report to the legislature,” MassDOT Highway Administrator Frank Depaola explained, “Going forward as they make further decisions, they want to know what the reaction is, what the total reaction is.”

It will cost less than a $1.75  for shorter trips between exits one and six.  The toll increases are part of a comprehensive transportation bill passed earlier this spring.

All of the money raised in the toll hikes is required by law to be spent between exits 1-14 on the mass pike.

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