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Toll roads benefit the rich

July 28, 2009

Re "Tolls will take L.A. freeways into a new era," July 24

I pay taxes when buying a car, a license plate and gasoline, which supposedly help fund L.A.'s freeway construction.

Now the MTA will charge me to drive on a freeway.

When does super-city Los Angeles start acting like it? We must develop a realistic countywide transportation plan and implement it.

John Holmstrom

Hollywood

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The introduction of tolls on the freeways is classist and ignores another, more important purpose of carpool lanes.

The carpool lanes are not simply meant to reduce congestion and facilitate speed; they are meant to reduce pollution.

Now the wealthy will be paying not just to go faster but to pollute more. The rich will be able to afford the tolls and continue to drive in single cars.

Why not cut to the chase and just build two freeways: one for the rich and one for the poor?

Tom Impelluso

La Mesa, Calif.

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This kind of solution results in the rich who can deduct the cost of toll roads, food and sports events living the good life, while the rest of us have to pay the resulting high price for these niceties out of our pocket.

As usual, The Times supports the rich and ignores the rest of the population.

Bryan Richard

Los Angeles

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In the article, you write that solo drivers will be allowed to pay tolls to drive in carpool lanes on the 10 and 110 freeways. This is a step in the right direction.

However, the article also said that vehicles carrying more than one person would be allowed to use the lanes at no cost.

What justification is there for this? One vehicle causes the same amount of congestion and wear and tear whether it carries five people or one person. Each vehicle should be charged the same toll regardless of the number of passengers.

In these tough financial times, we cannot afford to give these multi-passenger vehicles a free ride. They should be required to pay the same as everyone else.

Also requiring multi-passenger vehicles to pay the full toll should reduce congestion because it would provide an incentive to increase the number of passengers per vehicle.

Robert H. Biggadike

West Covina

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