Proposed bills could provide southern Indiana drivers relief fro - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Proposed bills could provide southern Indiana drivers relief from bridge tolls

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JEFFERSONVILLE, Ind. (WDRB) – Two southern Indiana lawmakers are proposing legislation to help provide some relief from paying tolls.

Senate Bill 378, which was filed Monday, would allow a tax credit of up to $1,000 for businesses in Clark and Floyd Counties. Senator Ron Grooms, who represents Floyd County and parts of Clark County, said the businesses must have RiverLink accounts to qualify. And the business would have to spend at least $1,000 each year on tolls.

Senate Bill 258 was also filed Monday. It would allow a tax deduction up to $500 for individual drivers from Clark or Floyd Counties. The driver must pay more than $100 each year on tolls and have a RiverLink account to qualify.

“They feel like there should be some relief for those who have to pay to cross the river to go to work,” said Grooms, who authored both bills.

Grooms brought up versions of both bills last year, but neither ever got to committee. The senator hopes this 2017 session will be different.

“There’s a lot more attention being put on tolls and about how infrastructure and bridges and roads are paid for this year than there ever has been before,” he said.

The third bill revolving around the Ohio River bridges was authored and proposed by Indiana Representative Ed Clere. House Bill 1269 would create stricter penalties for not displaying license plates properly.

The RiverLink system relies on reading license plates in order to bill drivers without transponders. If a plate is not displayed or it is covered, that driver might evade paying the toll. If this bill is approved, the fines would go toward paying for the bridges.

It is still too early to tell when any of these bills might be heard in committee.

Click here for all of WDRB's Ohio River Bridges Project stories

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