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Compilation of Public Opinion Data on Tolls and Road Pricing: A Synthesis of Highway Practice
Johanna Zmud, Carlos Arce
In order to deal with road congestion, several states and localities have considered implanting tolls to manage congestion and raise revenues for roads. By aggregating data, the researchers came to the conclusion that majority of the public supports tolling and road prices, depending on a variety of factors. While this seems counter-intuitive, majority of discontent stems from policies that don’t actually address issues with tolling and road prices, as well as misunderstanding of the public opinion on such matters. Overall, the public wants to see tangible benefits and reasons that come from using tolling and road prices. They want said revenues to be allocated to specific uses. The tolling must be fair, as well have simple mechanics. Most individuals generally prefer tolls to taxes. However, given these facts, the public needs to be informed have experience on such matters, or there will be less support for tolling and road prices.
State policy makers should seriously consider the possibility of tolls and road prices in order to raise revenues for road infrastructure, etc. However, implementing such ideas must be done with care. If policy makers were to provide tangible reasons and benefits for the tolls and road prices, they would be highly likely to be implemented.
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