The suggested toll proposal for foreigners aka (Illinois drivers entering Missouri) really irks this writer. This writer had heard that out of state workers who work in the city of St. Louis have to have a special tax of ten dollars extra taken from the paycheck of a St. Louis City employee. Granted this writer does not know if this is still going on. Missourians joke that we as (Missourians give you work on this side of the river) Illinois may reply we just fill the jobs Missourians do not want to work at. It is cliche, but both states have a lottery, both states have legalized gambling. Where is the money for a bridge and or education?
Can one imagine Scott Air Force Base charging an extra toll for Missourians to enter the base? Should nightclubs in Illinois add a “Alien “tax to Missourians who frequent those places? Or can Illinois add a toll on this new toll bridge for people destined for Chicago even though it is about three hundred miles away from the proposed toll bridge?
This writer thinks one step ahead of the game. Make it entertaining. Make it a “Reality Show.” You can create a ‘Troll Bridge” Post the troll booth with an evil little leprechaun who cusses out Illinois drivers who cross into Missouri, and film the drivers reaction to the troll. Than rally up the several hundred thousand commuters who will cross this bridge and interview each commuter and asked them how they deal with this reality. Stock the river with alligators and those who cannot deal with the troll must swim across the river than go to work. The winner will get a photo op. with a top model and end up as the apprentice to a rich guy.
Alternatives to the toll. The only alternative is no toll and one small example is why:
In the sports world both Missouri and Illinois have huge draws when the opposing teams play each other. Everyone knows the rivalry that already exists in the sports world between these two states. The “New Blues” according to recent television commercials want “you” back. What better an invitation than to toll people with Illinois residence who are already paying good money to see a game pay for parking and all that goes with the cost of a sporting event.
Illinoisan’s are already paying twice the amount they did before on electricity from just last year.Do Missourians have a concept perhaps that Illinoisan’s are all rich just add a toll, “they “have no right to be here. It always seems that when in a hurry for a solution someone has to pay quick, why not a toll? Tolls are not new, they are as old as mankind.
Another word for toll is roaming used on a cell telephone bill, or “etc” as on miscellaneous charges on utility bills. You must pay a “toll” or membership charge to lift weights at a gym. You must pay a”toll” to swing a golf club at most clubs so you “belong” to them. The word toll itself is connotative that one does not belong here, but you are privileged temporarily now that you have paid.
There is no privilege in paying a toll for this bridge and only billing one party. Put toll gates on both sides of this same river on this same bridge if you must and let’s see what happens. Perhaps have alternative days when Illinois can toll Missourians for crossing the JB Bridge into Illinois. Truckers already pay unbelievable tax and gas rates add a toll to this new bridge and you know what, every consumer pays in all states because most goods are trucked. Traffic will be worse, and I foresee “road rage”inn’s popping up all over the place. Little kids could sell lemonade to people stuck more in traffic than ever, just think some kid could end up making more money than there working parents. A mobile gas station right on the bridge for those who need it could gouge those drivers good who run out of gas. St. Louis wants to grow, is a toll the best way?