HARTFORD, Conn. (CBSNewYork) — Connecticut is mulling over an idea to privatize highways to help pay for road, bridge and rail repairs.

Proponents of the idea like the idea that private contractors who lease the highways would not only collect tolls, but also maintain the roads, WCBS 880 Connecticut Bureau Chief Fran Schneidau reported.

The downside, state Rep. Gail Lavielle believes, would be inevitable toll hikes.

“A private company must sign a contract that it believes will be a money-making venture, and therefore I don’t think that a private company would accept to sign a contract that would include a cap on their ability to raise tolls,” said Lavielle, R-Wilton, a member of the Transportation Committee.

Lavielle noted that when Indiana privatized its highways, tolls nearly doubled in just one year.

Connecticut lawmakers on Monday are looking for ways to pay for Gov. Dannel Malloy’s 30-year, $100-billion effort to overhaul transportation.

A bill that would allow tolls to be placed anywhere on Connecticut highways cleared the Transportation Commitee last month.


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