House passes proposal to lift cap on toll projects in Tennessee

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- The state House has voted to remove limits on how many toll roads or bridges could be built in Tennessee.

House Transportation Chairman Phillip Pinion, a Union City Democrat, says the measure is necessary to jump-start infrastructure projects amid dwindling federal road money. The proposal passed on a 77-13 vote.

Tennessee transportation officials were notified last week that they will need to subtract another $66 million from promised federal money for road work.

The federal government has cut nearly a quarter-billion dollars from Tennessee's expected road money since 2005.

The companion bill is scheduled to be considered in the Senate Transportation Committee on Wednesday.

The Legislature last year created a pilot program that allowed for one toll road and one toll bridge project.

(Copyright 2008 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)

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