Pennsylvania Turnpike tolls to rise in January

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HARRISBURG -- Tolls on the Pennsylvania Turnpike will increase in January by 2 percent for vehicles with E-ZPass and 12 percent for those paying cash.

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission said the increase is needed largely to allow the organization to meet its obligations under a 2007 law, known as Act 44, that requires it to pay $450 million each year for use on the state's ground-transportation network. The money will be spent on bridge and highway improvements, including rebuilding and widening the toll road, and to support the operation of public-transit authorities.

The increase was approved by the five-member Turnpike Commission on July 15 and will take effect Jan. 5.

The commission authorized a lower increase for E-ZPass customers because electronic tolls are less expensive to collect, the organization said. Turnpike CEO Mark Compton said E-ZPass collection also cuts emissions by reducing idling at tollbooths.

E-ZPass tolls have received lower increases than cash tolls since 2011, he said.

The toll hike will increase the fee for traveling from Irwin to Pittsburgh from $1.02 to $1.04 for E-ZPass customers and from $1.40 to $1.60 for cash-paying customers, according to the commission. The toll for traveling from Cranberry to Pittsburgh will increase from $2.71 to $2.77 for E-ZPass customers and from $3.55 to $4 for cash-paying customers.

The toll increase is the 11th in the history of the Turnpike Commission and the sixth since the passage of Act 44, according to the commission.

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Karen Langley: klangley@post-gazette.com or 717-787-2141. First Published July 29, 2013 4:00 PM


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