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We condense letters; most, as published, won't exceed 300 words. A letter must include the writer's name and city, which will be published, and an address and telephone number for verification, which will not be published. Writers may be limited to one letter every 30 days. Open letters, letters to third parties and poetry are not considered. Letters from people living outside the Chronicle's circulation area usually are not considered.

Metro @ugusta

Says 'toll roads, no; gas tax, yes'

Web posted Aug. 09 at 05:26 PM

Editor, The Chronicle:

Only in the nation's capital could one of the most driver-unfriendly institutions find enthusiastic support. Having lived in both New York and Pennsylvania, I know first hand what a frustrating experience it is trying to get through a busy toll booth and needing to worry whether or not I have any change.

I agree the nation's infrastructure is in need of repair but toll roads are not the answer. Setting up a toll system would necessitate the creation of another federal bureaucracy with thousands of new federal workers eating from the public trough.

The toll booths would require maintenance and people to do the maintenance, only adding to the cost of the toll. Why don't we just raise the gas tax? Gas down at the corner today is only 87 cents and Americans are driving bigger cars than ever. I think we could all afford a dime increase on a gallon of gas.

The mechanisms for collecting this tax are already in place; all that would have to be done is to raise the percentage collected. This is a much more efficient and sensible solution for raising the required revenue than establishing a toll system. There is also the remote possibility that once the repairs were made the tax could be lowered. A toll system would be with us forever.

Eric Dalton, North Augusta

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