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Turnpike Authority Scrambling after Budget Vote

Turnpike Authority Scrambling after Budget Vote

PORTSMITH, R.I. (AP) _ The chairman of the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority says failure to begin collecting tolls on the Sakonnet River Bridge next month could mean a loss of millions of dollars in infrastructure investments, and force the authority to borrow more money.
David Darlington, chairman of the quasi-public agency, tells WPRI-TV  that his agency has already spent $3.5 million on the tolls' structure, equipment and computer software.
He says failure to collect the tolls may violate terms of the loan the RITBA used to pay for the new tollbooths and could lead to a lawsuit.
The new state budget delays collecting the tolls until at least February, giving lawmakers time to study alternatives. Residents in the East Bay have complained that the toll would be an unfair burden.

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