Judge Rules State’s Truck Toll System Unconstitutional

In a case being watched closely by many states a federal judge has slammed the brakes on Rhode Island’s truck tolls and sided with the long-haul trucking industry’s complaint that the highway charges were unfair and unconstitutional.    

The judge wrote that because RhodeWorks fails to fairly apportion its tolls among bridge users based on a fair approximation of their use of the bridges, was enacted with a discriminatory purpose, and is discriminatory in effect, the statute’s tolling regime is unconstitutional under the dormant Commerce Clause of the United States Constitution.

Rhode Island is the only state in the country with a truck-toll system like the one struck down. The trucking industry fought it since 2018 in large part to prevent any other states from trying their own.

On Wednesday the trucking industry celebrated.”This is a tremendous day for our industry – not just here in Rhode Island, but across the country – had we not prevailed, these tolls would have spread across the country and this ruling sends a strong signal to other states that trucking is not to be targeted as a piggy bank,” Rhode Island Trucking Association President Chris Maxwell said in a news release.

Source: ProvidenceJournal.com