Angry commuter passholders vent their frustrations

5:35 PM, Oct 2, 2012   |    comments
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PORTLAND, Maine (NEWS CENTER) - Maine Turnpike board members got an earful Tuesday from commuter passholders.

On November 1, the system is being changed and some commuter passholders will see their rates double and even triple.

The commuter pass gives users deep discounts for traveling between the same two exits. On the first of next month, the system is being changed to a volume system, meaning the more you use the turnpike the bigger discount you get.

Many commuters who travel between the same two exits, will not get those discounts, in fact some will see their rates shoot up more than 100 percent.

"With this new change effective November first, you're asking me to choose between food, oil, gas, and tolls to get to work. I can not afford this increase in the tolls. I'm a single woman with a mortgage", said Amber St. Peter of Springvale.

MTA executive director Peter Mills says the changes are being made to fairly spread out discounts to more turnpike users.

"We have thousands of people that will actually be getting a discount that they have not been getting before," he said.

Board members said they would consider an alternate plan which would result in fewer commuter plan holders seeing those huge increases, but that did little to appease many in the crowd. The board will meet again two weeks from Thursday on October 18.


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