Posting in Transportation
Fares are going up in 2013 for everyone except veterans.
The Texas Department of Transportation is going the extra mile to honor decorated and disabled military veterans -- literally.
As the Dallas Morning News reported Thursday, Texas residents who have been disabled during military service, or decorated with a purple heart or congressional medal of honor, will be able to use several of the state's toll roads free of charge.
“We are able to celebrate our freedom each and every day due to the unwavering sacrifice of our military’s brave men and women, so making it a bit easier for them to move through our great state is the least we can do,” Phil Wilson, Executive Director of TxDOT, said in a press statement.
Governor Rick Perry praised the program. "In Texas," Perry said Thursday, "we understand and appreciate the sacrifices the men and women of our armed forces make in defense of our freedom, and we consider it an honor to support them."
The State of Texas runs toll highways in four metropolitan areas: Austin, Tyler, Laredo, and Houston. The fee waiver program will extend only to Loop 1, SH 45 North, SH 45 Southeast in Austin; SH 255 near Laredo; and 49 in Tyler. Houston toll road SH 99 will not included in the waiver program due to existing bondholder agreements.
Initially, the cost of the program was expected to be quite high. As the Austin-American Statesman reported Thursday, eligible veterans -- 7,360 of whom live in the area -- make up just .8 percent of toll traffic. As such, costs are expected to run less than $1 million per year.
For eligible veterans, benefits of the toll waiver will quickly multiply. On Jan. 1, 2013, the day the waiver goes into effect, toll rates are scheduled to rise 25-50 percent.
Sep 2, 2012
Just another excuse to jack up prices. Do those fools not realise Americians have less money..Elect more rich people, they don't have to live on a budget like the rest of us. You can bet the ones rasing taxes arn't paying them and are getting richer every day...
were the hell was all this help in the 60's and 70's. oh thats right we were baby killers go live on the street
I have to heartily agree with the post above. Just like a Republican governor, flash in the pan, "look at me". The suggestion clearly shows the care nothing for the Vets...just looking good right before an election
All due respect to our veterans, but this is a silly program. If you want to honor our veterans monetarily, why not just give them money to spend as they please? Instead we're offering them incentives specifically to increase congestion, increase pollution, sacrifice their own health by spending more time in their cars, and spend more of their own money on gas/maintenance/etc. Especially for a state and governor so dead-set against social engineering this just reeks of it. Frankly this is as much a giveaway to oil interests as it is to veterans. If they want to honor veterans, instead of passing up this toll revenue they should just collect it from everyone--including veterans--and then spend the appropriate percentage of that revenue on something that's actually good for veterans, like housing aid, job training, medical care, really just about anything other than this. It'd probably require less additional bureaucracy too, compared to what you'd need to do to distinguish veteran drivers from everyone else. And just as a small side note, what about disabled vets who can't drive? I guess Texas just doesn't honor them quite as much.
It is appalling that the US Postal service places a preference on hiring family members of existing employees over hiring veterans. Most states also fail to give veterans hiring preference when filling vacancies.