I am at a loss to understand why there is not absolute outrage by the motorists in Miami-Dade County over the fact that we are being charged new and exorbitant tolls to travel on the various state and federally owned roadways in the county.
Suddenly, with little or no warning, tolls are being charged for motorists to drive on portions of various highways in the county, travel that was previously free. Who gave these people the authority to levy a toll on a highway that has already been built and paid for, and should be free for to all people to drive on? Why are we accepting this?
People, wake up! We have suddenly been slapped with a new tax that is taking money out of our pockets, money that we could use to feed our families and buy our kids new clothing. This is just not right.
As I read the MDX (they don’t even use a proper name; they hide behind a bunch of letters!) statement on their website, they say that our esteemed board of county commissioners decided back in 2005 that the county was not getting its fair share of revenues from the state derived from collections at the various toll booths on expressways in the county. Our commissioners decided to create the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority which would override the State of Florida and directly receive the tolls collected in the county, and spend that money more equitably to maintain the roads and ease traffic congestion. What they have done is build new automatic tolling devices on virtually every expressway in the county and dramatically increase the cost of travelling on a highway. In essence, they have often tripled the cost of getting to work each day, while telling us in their advertising that the new Open Road Tolling system is a faster and better system. It is not.
People, we have already paid for the construction of these roads and the taxes we pay when we buy gasoline should be more than enough to maintain them. We should be eliminating tolls on our roadways; not creating new ones.
The board of county commissioners is ripping off the taxpayers by establishing the new MDX to levy new tolls on our expressways. These highways already belong to the people! We cannot allow them to be taxed continuously after we have already paid gasoline taxes to maintain them. We are being taxed time and again for the same reason.
We must protest this unjust taxation! Who approved the creation of the Miami Dade Expressway Authority? I, for one, do not remember voting on this item. Yet, we now have a new body telling us that we must pay as much as an additional $100 a month or more (depending on where you live) to get to work each day.
Please! Stand up and tell your county commissioner that this is not something that you agree with or voted for. Call your commissioner and tell him or her that you don’t agree with this unjust taxation and that you want the Miami-Dade Expressway Authority abolished.
Taxation without representation is tyranny!
Ron Beasley is the executive editor of the Pinecrest Tribune. The views expressed in this column are his own, and not necessarily those of the publishers of this newspaper.