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The Oregon Transportation Commission is already studying using tolls as a way to raise more money and ease congestion.

PMG FILE PHOTO - The City of Wilsonville's biggest legislative priority has been to get the Oregon State Legislature to add a southbound auxilary lane on I-5 near WilsonvilleOregon House Speaker Tina Kotek, expressing concerns about the skyrocketing cost of the Interstate 5 widening project in Portland, said Friday that the state needs to move more aggressively to implement tolls on the region's entire freeway network, OPB reports.

With costs for the project near Portland's Rose Center now threatening to double in cost, the Portland Democrat said legislators have a big challenge in front of them.

"One of the things I think we're going to have to bring back to the table is more immediate implementation of regionwide congestion pricing and tolling for the entire region," Kotek said, "from the Columbia River to the Boone Bridge" in Wilsonville.

"We have got to take this seriously," she added, arguing that lawmakers need to come up with more money for this and other Portland highway projects to avoid cannibalizing money for road projects around the state.

Kotek made her declaration at a meeting with reporters previewing the legislative session that starts Feb. 3.

Oregon Public Broadcasting is a media partner of the Portland Tribune.


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