Letter: Tollway system is embarrassment

By on April 9, 2009

I don’t know if I should admire or feel sorry for Reps. Chapin Rose (R-Mahomet) and David Reis (R-Willow Hill) when they say that they are co-sponsoring legislation that would require the toll authority to send violation notices out within 30 days.

Just the fact that they have to introduce this kind of legislation shows what citizens of our state have known for some time: Our legislators in Springfield have lost all control of the very agency that their colleagues put in place during the 1950s. To support my accusation, just a few weeks ago officers at the toll authority told Gov. Pat Quinn that they didn’t need his or anyone else’s approval to hire a director for their Downers Grove Taj Mahal office.

Like many of our state legislators, Reps Rose and Reis don’t see the real problem at the toll authority. It’s not just sending violation notices, but all the corruption we hear about several times throughout the year.

Within the last two years, we saw the moving of tens of millions of dollars from tollbooth collections to the state treasury, the doubling of the toll/tax for those not buying an I-Pass, the monstrous fines for drivers not watching the expiration date on their credit card and the awarding of top management with 54 to 90 percent salary increases.

If Rep’s Rose and Reis really want to do some good, they should go after this violation legislation, get together with Gov. Quinn and convince him to support legislation that would get rid of the toll/tax from our highways once and for all. The tollway system has been an embarrassment long enough for citizens of Illinois. Starting to work on no-toll legislation now will insure that we will be ready when the economy comes around in a few years.

If citizens feel the way that I do, they should visit the website www.notolls-illinois.com.

Russell Johnson
Sugar Grove