Legislators give opponents of ferry tolls some hope

Published: Saturday, April 27, 2013 at 22:04 PM.

Pat Prescott said the ferry was supposed to be an extension of N.C. 306. She said people in the counties that depend on the ferry system already pay taxes and another one would be “an undue burden” on them, especially since the area was still recovering from Hurricane Irene.

Oriental resident Jim Barton, a retired Navy captain, gave a history of ferries in Beaufort and Pamlico counties. Barton said the ferries are what connect all of the counties and communities.

Larry Summers, an Oriental commissioner and one of the anti-toll group leaders, said 800 people use the ferry to get to Cherry Point for medical reasons and to go to the commissary, and as many as 300 people commute daily to Cherry Point. Ferry tolls also would affect people using the VA Clinic in Morehead City, he said.

Torbett said he was going to do all he could to stop the tolls, but it would have to be a team effort in the Appropriations Committee.

“I wish I could say definitely there will not be ferry tolls,” he said. “I hope the next time I come, the toll booth (at Minnesott Beach) will be selling hot dogs.”

Sanderson said the battle over the tolls was going to be in the Senate.

All the money from tourists who visit the coastal areas of North Carolina would be much more revenue for the state than the tolls would generate for the Department of Transportation, Sanderson said.



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