By Susan Gager & John Boyd
KWCH 12 Eyewitness News
7:23 PM CST, November 5, 2012
(SEDGWICK COUNTY, Kan.)
Taking the Kansas Turnpike will cost you a little more. Tolls are going up starting in today.
“Like any business we adjust our prices from time to time,” said KTA president Michael Johnston.
This time it's 10% on average for cars and light trucks and 5% for large commercial vehicles and K-Tag users.
From the South Wichita 47th St. toll both to Emporia, it's four dollars for cars and light trucks. A 10% increase equals an extra 40 cents a trip. If you have a K-Tag it's a 5% increase or twenty cents a trip.
Most drivers we talked to along the turnpike didn't mind.
“I don't really notice the toll that much. You just pay once and I think it's a good value because I'm usually cutting through Kansas. It's pretty painless and I like it because there's a lot less traffic than other states,” said driver Tom Senne.
“A lot of the roads ought to be more toll roads because most of the people taking this road don't live here so why should we support that?” asked driver Bill Ousterhout.
Others would rather skip the toll stops altogether.
“I would almost rather see them find another way to raise the revenue- the gas tax.
The Kansas Turnpike Authority last raised the toll in Ictober 2009 and have raised it 14 times since it opened back in 1956. Staff say they need to adjust prices just like any other business to keep up.
“As time goes by year after year, things wear out. We go back and make those repairs. It's part of an ongoing part of our business and our costs don't decline and don't go away just because the original in debtITness of the turnpike has retired,” said Johnston.
The Kansas Turnpike Authority says the increase will help support future capital needs, especially with ongoing deck replacements on some of the turnpike's 348 bridges. No tax dollars are used to maintain the turnpike.
The Turnpike says travelers can save up to 30% on their tolls by getting a K-TAG. Learn more about the K-TAG system at www.myktag.com.
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