McDonnell Tolls for Thee, Virginia

Governor wants to stretch I-95 tolls south to N.C.

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Interstate 95, already tolled extensively from Baltimore through Maine, soon may include a charge for entrance to Virginia.

Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell wants to toll I-95 near the North Carolina border to help fund the commonwealth's long-debated transportation needs. McDonnell's administration filed an application for the toll to the Federal Highway Administration.

"After a careful review of the commonwealth's transportation needs, I believe the ability to toll Interstate 95 at the border will quickly enable the commonwealth to begin addressing some of our greatest areas of concern," McDonnell said.

A toll of $1 to $2 per axle would generate an estimated $30 million to $60 million per year to be used exclusively for projects in the I-95 corridor, with safety coming first. Some stretches of I-95 have some of the state's highest accident rates, Virginia officials said.

Virginia has approval to toll Interstate 81 and is requesting to switch that approval to I-95, according to the governor's office.

Virginia lawmakers have for years fought over how to pay for infrastructure and safety improvements. One of Gov. Tim Kaine's administration's ideas was closing 19 rest areas in the state, but McDonnell has reopened those with plans to reduce the cost of operating all of the state's rest areas.

McDonnell also supports offshore oil drilling with most of the revenue going to transportation.

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