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Originally published May 7, 2011 at 7:37 PM | Page modified May 7, 2011 at 7:55 PM

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Eyman's initiative seeks to restrict tolling in state

Initiative activist Tim Eyman's latest offering — if it makes it onto November's ballot and is approved by voters — could bring the tolling plan for the Columbia River Crossing to a screeching halt.

The Columbian

quotes So, the ring salesman is now both a lawyer and a social policy expert? When will... Read more
quotes When will this guy learn that tolls and taxes pay for things. We as Americans are... Read more
quotes Never mind--if you want to defeat an Eyman initiative, just deliver a brown paper bag... Read more

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VANCOUVER, Wash. — Initiative activist Tim Eyman's latest offering — if it makes it onto November's ballot and is approved by voters — could bring the tolling plan for the Columbia River Crossing to a screeching halt.

Eyman announced recently he's collecting signatures on Initiative 1125, which would change Washington law to ban peak-hour tolling, a key part of the tolling plan for the Vancouver-Portland crossing. It also would prohibit tolls from being used to pay for anything but highway purposes and require the Legislature to set toll amounts.

I-1125 would eliminate loopholes the state Legislature is attempting to find in the wake of last year's passing of Eyman's Initiative 1053, which requires a two-thirds majority for tax increases and a simple majority to increase fees, he said. Since the law passed last year, Eyman said Legislators have been gravitating to fee increases to raise revenue.

He said he believes tolls, a fee, will be raided by lawmakers to pay for any number of things, essentially making them a tax. State law already prevents such a raid, but Eyman said he's trying to reinforce that law.

Planners expect $1.1 billion to $1.4 billion of the $3.6 billion bridge and upgrade project to be paid for with tolling.

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