Lawmaker: Dump turnpike authority board


A Rhode Island state lawmaker wants to oust leaders of the state’s Turnpike and Bridge Authority over proposals to increase tolls on the Pell Bridge.

Rep. Raymond Gallison says he sent a letter to Gov. Lincoln Chafee this week asking him to replace the authority’s board members. Gallison criticizes the board for suggesting that the $2 per axle toll should be increased on the Pell Bridge, which connects Newport and Jamestown.

Gallison, a Bristol Democrat, also opposes a call to reinstate tolls on the Mount Hope bridge, between Bristol and Portsmouth.

Gallison says more tolls aren’t needed and could discourage tourism in the Ocean State.

Chafee has not publicly responded to Gallison’s letter.

Authority Chairman David Darlington has said toll increases are needed to raise money for bridge maintenance.

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