Mary Burke Says She’d Consider Creating Toll Roads

Democratic Candidate For Governor Says All Transportation Funding Mechanisms Should Be 'On The Table'

Mary Burke says toll roads are a method of raising cash for transportation projects that she'd consider. Photo: Washington State DOT (CC-BY-NC-ND).

Democratic candidate for governor Mary Burke says the idea of toll roads should be “on the table” when discussing transportation funding in the state.

Burke joined a road building contractor who is a backer of hers for a news conference amid the heavy machinery of crews working on the Zoo Interchange reconstruction in western Milwaukee County. Burke said that the Scott Walker-supported project is an important part of Wisconsin’s infrastructure. Burke also said the state is using general purpose revenue and borrowing too much money for road building, and that cash raising options like toll roads should be explored.

“We should have all the options out on the table,” said Burke. “Toll roads are certainly one of those options, and I would consider looking at that.“

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Burke says trimming some highway projects might also be a good idea. She says the state Department of Transportation might want to slow down on its talk of widening or double-decking I-94 through Milwaukee’s west side.

“We have to determine whether it’s really needed,” said Burke. “I think there are some thoughts that … we’re overbuilding.”

A spokesperson for Walker’s re-election campaign, when asked about the toll road issue, responded by saying the governor’s most recent budget invested over $6 billion, without raising taxes, to improve our state’s roads, bridges, and railways. Walker’s campaign says the state is still repaying the Doyle administration’s raid of over $1 billion in transportation funding.