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Drivers to be Filmed and Penalized for Taking Exits to Avoid New I-81 Tolls

Comments (62)
  1. Edward Mack says:

    For the whole 325 miles, “Costs would hit $35.75 and $55.25 for cars and trucks respectively.” That’s a lot! So, what happens to a motorist, like me, who only jumps on I-81 for an exit or two to get around Harrisonburg traffic or to get to the other side of town quickly? And, what does the state do with all of the toll money?

    1. Dave says:

      The dimocrats just keep pushing business out of the state, while penalizing its own citizens. SMH

      Rest assured, the money will go to their elite pals in NoVA.

      1. Edward Mack says:

        VA business ranking by Forbes has dropped to 4th last yr. It was 1st from 2006-13. Honestly, I’m surprised that it’s still that high, considering ridiculously high costs in NoVA & other cities like Charlottesville. More taxes, like this I-81 toll tax, will hurt more businesses.

      2. Nhga says:

        I swear we would all be better off without these idiots in office! They lay awake at night dreamin up ways to make our lives harder!

      3. Cody says:


    2. R.T. says:

      Everyone knows the collected tolls will never go for their intended purpose. It never happened when I-95 through Richmond and Petersburg was blanketed with toll booths. Virginia collected enough money from tolls to have replaced/resurfaced that stretch of road a dozen times over but it was the worst stretch of road to ride on for decades. It seems whenever Richmond gets $$$, they find ways to burn it by expanding government via hiring more people to run complex, multi-layered programs…It’s the same song and dance with roads…They’ll have all this $$$, they’ll build a hierarchy until eventually, there’s barely enough money left over for the same road crews to patch the same potholes along the same stretches of I-81…and everything is status quo except the new bureaucrats (and friends) are now getting their payday…

    3. Mike Linck says:

      Seems ridiculous to me to monitor your on-off activity. You need to leave the highway to purchase fuel and food, to visit points of interest, to use restroom facilities, etc. Are motorists going to be penalized for driving on US-11 instead of I-81?

    4. Patricia Lassiter says:

      yep- visitors and Virginia taxpayers, welcome to Communist Virginia is for Lovers as you are watched as you drive to your favorite bathroom off I-81 and you are fined for taking a road of your choosing. So you cannot travel a road without punishment and you cannot own a gun of your choosing but you can kill your baby freely. What a way to go DOCTOR Northam.

    5. revamadison says:

      WHAT DO I THINK? HIGHWAY ROBBERY. And that is not being tongue in cheek. We, the American taxpayer, paid for the road, and pay through the nose with income tax to service those roads. Everyone pays, and all can use. Just because someone doesn’t use a particular one, doesn’t mean they use other roads. I dont stray over there often, but maybe two or three times a year, I take 33 or even I 66 over to the other side of I 81, and then back again. It is stupid for me to have to pay for a few miles here or there. Nut even worse, stupid for anyone to have to pay, for what has already been paid for. If we want to pay for play, make it that, and get rid of Income Taxes, both state and federal, and then see what doesnt get taken care of in this nation.

      1. Caroline says:

        Amen to that. How truel

  2. David Mott says:

    The tolls are far too high. This would work only if it used responders which were positioned between all exits. That’s a lot of technology. Potentially pretty invasive too.

  3. Joperky says:

    TAX TAX TAX that’s all the dumbocrats know how to do,,VOTE NO ON I81 toll roads in Va.All they are going to do is cause the cost of all the products hauled on I84 which has a lot of truck traffic,which hauls everything you and I need to live..Tell the stupid gov not to toll I 81…Also tehh him to STOP SPENDING MONEY LIKE IT GROWS ON TREES.

  4. Leonard Blakley says:

    On the one hand… we are getting nailed up here with increasing tolls on the Dulles Toll Road, because the politicians lied years ago, and 66 inside the beltway etc. as if we are all rich but on the other hand, if this toll had existed when my kid was still going to Va. Tech, I would never have gone to visit him and never visit family in Roanoke. And what about all the businesses off 81, restaurants etc. where one gets off to utilize, or you just want to take the slow route for a while. Another totally insane liberal idea.

  5. J. Ronny Kellies says:

    I81 tolls is the most ignorant tax yet. We paid for this along time ago but tax and spend is what the Socialist/Marxist Democrat’s do. Virginia is toast and is now solid blue. Thus, my family will move in the near future. We know how this story will eventually be in Virginia. High tax just like most of the other Democrat controlled states. People from Maryland are swamping Northern Virginia in an effort to escape the taxes in that state. While that is good, if the new residents vote the same way, the taxes they run from will surely follow. Disgusting to say the least.

  6. Joseph Newland says:

    Not A Good Idea, Matter fact a poor idea Peoples will be travling secondary roads to avoid tolls there will be slow drivers ,people will get impatient and need to pass plus the secondary roads from more usuage will need more repairs and accidents … At least with Rt. 81 the traffic keeps moving and out taxes have already paid for Rt, 81 many times over … If it wwere something like the Bay Bridge net work over the water it would be a different story … Our Economy is doing better than it done for years ….Why do You people that are in the know want to Stymie it? there are better ways to fix the issues at hand then ra ise taxes… If U put a toll on it U know very well it will push the price of goods up and U know who will be making up the differance ? You and me … So now U are raising the price of our Goods as well Is that what U really think we deserve?

  7. Larry H Lee says:

    We have to find a way to limit both federal and state spending or we doom our unborn grandchildren to a life of servitude to governmental debt which will never be paid off but will make rich folks richer because they have enough cash to buy the bonds.
    Stop it now! Stop it here! Our children and grandchildren have no representation in government, yet they are being taxed. Unfair and unacceptable.

  8. Howard R Cannon says:

    As long as Democrats are in power they will think of every way they can to tax us.

    Let’s see….so far this idiot we have in the Governor’s office wants to take away our guns,
    take away our Voter ID laws, and take away our money and right to freely drive on the
    highways that our taxes already paid for and continue to pay to maintain.

    Yep, there’s a place in Hell for people like that!

    1. Mary says:


  9. RANDY says:

    This is part of the commiecrats plan to destroy . Va. is now a commie state . I hope we can take the state back .

  10. Sandi says:

    Do not put any more tolls in VA! Stop with the taxes already – just STOP it now!,

  11. Boyd says:

    Why spend an additional $1 Billion dollars to create a new state bureaucracy and police force (Yes…it’s a police force when you have the power to penalize someone for a civil infraction)…when applying a small amount to the already in place and implemented state gas tax would do the exact same thing, and the collection system is already in place. All Virginians and all out of state drivers would contribute to keep the NoVA and tidewater roads repaired then (Yes Richmond…we know where all of the SW VA Tax money winds up at.) . This tax will never go away…and will continuously grow each and every year. The only reason this plan has even been suggested is because some Democrat(s) has figured out a way to become rich while in power, and it will allow him/her to keep getting richer at our expense when they leave office. This is nothing but a penalty tax for S/SW/W Va … because we do not vote for democrats in this area.

  12. Janna Boyd says:

    This’s so disappointing. Tolls and punishing people for not driving on the toll roads. What’s next Govenor and the VA Congress. Is this what the electorate really wanted? This country is turning into the ruling class of the we will do whatever we want and you will like it or else or we will take more of your money.

  13. Mike says:

    Good luck in court proving anyone avoided toll road. They just decided to take the scenic route and see things they haven’t seen. Start putting those Lottery funds to use the way they were intended, schools and roads, and not your pockets.

  14. Paul says:

    Virginians are already heavily taxed. The Communist Democrats want to monitor and tax the citizens 24/7.

  15. Bernie says:

    Exactly why I didn’t vote for these clowns, All they know is tax the working people and give illegals everything. Now you know why the want to take your guns they intend to dictate to you what you will and will not do. Enough is Enough!

  16. Edward B. Passno says:

    This is how a bean counter works. It is absurd to even try to implement. How would you inforce and track all this traffic? But if it is put in place the number of people that will actually blindly pay the fine is unfortunately going to make money. Please don’t be a sheeple and fight every ticket.

  17. dta says:

    Unless I have overlooked someone else pointing this out, and unless I am mistaken, Carrico and Austin are both Republicans. Seems these two should be replaced.

  18. Carl Miller says:

    Since when did it become illegal to use a public road in Virginia? I personally hate interstate highways to begin with. And the toll may start at $.11 per mile but once it is in place you can be assured there will be frequent and regular rate increases. Just look at the HOT lanes in NoVa, they are ridiculous.. last Friday it was almost $2.00 per mile.

  19. Dale says:

    Im a born virginian..and love the shenandoah valley..BUT. This toll thing is crazy. I will not pay a toll to shop in my neighboring counties nor will I be subjected to my travels being monitored. Ones in the valley will be hardest hit and its ridiculous. 81 is the main route for travel for most anything….so I pay a toll 2 times to make a round trip for daily radiation treatments. Cant you think of better ways to hurt the people you should be defending????? Pleassssee

  20. Brock says:

    Who are these lawmakers suggesting these cameras? We need names for verification please.

  21. pw says:

    another asinine liberal politician’s idea!

  22. Mark Walker says:

    “The cameras would record drivers to track their route, and to issue fines for taking exits to evade tolls.”

    So, this would entail cameras and surveillance on ALL the roads.

    What the hell is it with these Democrats? Orwell is not supposed to be an instruction manual.

  23. Debra Cox says:

    I do not live in VA, but my granddaughter goes to college in your state. This would impact VA colleges quite a bit. I doubt many fledgling students will choose institutions whose routes would take them down I-81. They could not afford it. It would also impact tourism in your state as people would choose to visit elsewhere instead of paying such outlandish tolls.

  24. Steve Hamby says:

    What’s wrong with you people, we’ve already paid for this highway through fuel tax and income tax! It’s our highway! Trucks already pay an additional road tax, thousands a year. Toll roads don’t work period, for proof of that go to New Jersey or Pennsylvania. It’s just a revenue for the state, politicians. The money they want to spend on the camera system will go a long way for paying for the highway expansion.

  25. John W Hargis Sr says:

    It states; Law makers believe that the plan will make it easier to secure federal funding! I am not altogether sure that those legislators know how federal funding estimation works, it is based on state needs and an increase of tolls would only reduce federal funding for infrastructure. These representatives, including our governor, have no idea what they are doing, none at all.

  26. Ken says:

    Seriously.,what do you expect from the Democratic Socialist Party!!!

  27. William Morando says:

    Communist Kane’s dream is getting closer. You Drunk.

  28. suzanne ippolito says:

    remember all those little towns and all the mom-and-pop businesses that disappeated when the big interstayes came thru? I see a resurgence as people flock NOT to use those big old roads any more…not jump off at a toll, just never get on.

  29. Ben Brown says:

    The bureaucrats in this state will never learn. The state government has very basic constitutional responsibilities and yet it has found another way to fund their non-essential social programs while taxing the citizens TWICE for a road system they’ve already paid for. Not to mention the multitude of unintended consequences that will predictably result from this comprehensive toll system. Just like a socialist government (which Virginia is fast becoming) to find a way to punish the citizenry, limit their freedoms and infringe on their privacy all in one fell swoop! No thanks!!

  30. carl bristol says:

    I don`t believe it`s legal to begin with . as a driver you have a choice to drive whatever road you wish. (unless its closed) . it doesn`t matter what the reason for getting off and on, the road has been paid for through taxes and tolls already. so what do they do with the tolls now . this is clearly infringing on your rights .

  31. Betsy Ballowe says:

    seems to me they could have true toll booths at strategic locations like entering VA at both ends, coming off 64 onto 81; coming from 77 onto 81. Make it reasonable – even $1 and if you traveled the entire road you would not pay again,……the true purpose of an interstate – faster, more efficient travel. If you have to keep stopping to pay a toll, then how is that efficient travel? Tax a truck $2 or even $5 if they are the ones who create the wrecks that tie up traffic for 4 hours. I don’t have a problem with a reasonable toll and then smart tags for locals for multiple locations to collect is ridiculous when traveling the entire road.

    Also doesn’t seem legal to penalize people for taking non-interstate roads for WHATEVER reason. We take them to avoid traffic when it piles up; why not to avoid the tolls as proposed.

  32. Ronnie Hesson says:

    This is more than likely going to be shoved down our throats because it will give the state more money to spend.However, I think all money raised by the I-81 toll should be used exclusively for I-81 improvement and maintenance. If we have to pay for the road that’s where the money should go.

  33. Jenn Gernat says:

    I think it’s fair to say they’re not pulling the wool over anyone’s eyes. We have been served this nonsense before and know that money would not go to our road infrastructure. Thanks to the dems, Virginia citizens will be broke, paying for programs and salaries as they see fit.

  34. Samuel ayres says:

    People paid taxes for that 81 not richmond

  35. Kathy Feller says:

    Three little words….This plan SUCKS!!!

  36. Joanne Sgrignoli says:

    Absurdity and bureaucracy at their worst. Stop this madness!

  37. Scott says:

    Being able to Travel is a big expense for many People and this Added Expense can be a Vacation Breaker, when your talking an Extra 80 to 100 dollars a trip. Then added fines if an Alternative Route is Taken.
    It Goes to Show that Democratic Leadership is a Quick trip to the Poor House and Higher Taxes.

  38. Grace McMillan says:

    I take roads off the beaten path ALL the time and have for years. It has NOTHING to do with tolls. Sometimes traffic is so bad I can’t take the stress and will go off on an exit and take a pretty back road. They’re going to penalize us for that? Well I will see you in court. I have a RIGHT to take ANY FKING ROAD I WANT.

  39. Kristin Keiser Dorsey says:

    I live in Rockbridge where two interstates meet. There are times I can and do take the interstates to get throughout the county but I mostly use back roads, because it can be quicker and safer. Tolls on 81 will not make them safer. Safety on 81 should be the primary goal. Until there are clear goals to decrease the danger spots on 81, increasing revenue through tolls, seems to be putting the cart before the horse and just another lame excuse to raise money for government pork projects instead of where the money is truly needed. Tolls on 81 in our area will only further damage our local economy. And after fiascos like the “Red Hen” incident and Marxist radicals wanting to erase our history, we dont need anything else to kill our local economy. Travelers, tourism, and the universities bring in a lot of income to our area. Plus, there is a good percentage of our local population that uses 81 for daily work commutes. Locally, we live the dangers and feel the impacts of 81, 64 and back country roads, not to mention the shock shaking streets of Lexington due to its seemingly never ending water issues constantly tearing up the pavement. Nothin like tryin to make a quick run to Walmart only to have to sit in accident traffic for 2 hours. We know 81 in our county has gotten worse. However, there needs to be more effort put into real working ideas of how to make it safer and not by using it as an excuse to fill Richmonds wallet, while draining ours.

  40. Kristin Keiser Dorsey says:

    As far as being “filmed” by uncle Sam for using back roads to avoid interstates. Go ahead, Communist Sam. It will cost a crap load of money for cameras and law enforcement to make sure citizens are FORCED to drive 81, just so the government can get money from them. Sooo, where’s all the enforcement money going to come from? If you have no money to “repair” 81 then where’s the “enforcement to decrease citizens rights” money coming from? There is no logic to the blatant infringement of filming citizens, invading their privacy, and punishing them based on assumptions, in order to force them into providing the government financial gain. This reeks of Socialist and Communist ideas. Hmm of which we fought 2 World Wars to try and stop. It wasn’t that many years ago, people were kicked out of our country for trying to start that crap here. However, the media using fear and radical liberal uneducated ideas are causing havoc I our country. The growing drug problem in our county not to mention in our country is astounding and taking our youth at an intense rate. Hey Richmond law makers, how about taking the money given to you by pharmaceutical companies to keep your citizens drugged up and dumb enough to fall for these unconstitutional as l ideas and make repairs to 81 with that.

  41. B.G. says:

    as i recall when governer tim cane was in office he approved a plan where the state would partener with norfolk southern railway to build a rail line skirting I 81 that would remove the truck traffic , at least a large portion of it. seems to me that putting the billians into something like that ,instead of the infastructure for a toll system would be a better solution to the problem.a toll system ,in my view will create more problems than they ever dreamed of ,and will be a total failure, which is what happens when ever the government gets put it bluntly I am agenst any kind of toll on I81.

  42. David Mott says:

    To summarize: It’s an impractical, expensive, unworkable, probably unconstitutional, unwise, and likely evil plan. So do not do it. Come up with something that isn’t any of these.

  43. Jeff says:

    Exactly how can a single state legally tax a portion of a Federal Interstate Highway without the approval of the Federal Government? That just doesn’t make sense.

  44. JEAN says:

    Glad we just moved from Virginia. Democrats are ruining this lovely state.

  45. Ernest Blevins says:

    I thought, save the grandfathered interstates (or routes that became interstates) such as WV Turnpike, that interstates were not to have tolls.

  46. JIMMY says:

    Can’t force me to use interstate. We are still on America. These are Federal roads. I’ll just use state routes. Good day

  47. Angel Page Loesch says:

    Land of the free…. my hind-end.

  48. Bruce says:

    This Govt, whether it is the Fed or state govt, is out of control w/spendingand collecting of taxes! They always go to the tax payer to IMPOSE and collect taxes instead of Fiscal responsibility! Then they decide “THEY ” will fine you IF you don’t take the raod they want you to take so THEY can fill their FREEKING coffers and spend money as if they were printing the stuff; OH wait, they are! City Councils etc are the Ones who Crucified Jesus Christ, and the same ones that will drive this Nation into the depths of ablivion w/out of control spending and “CONTROL” of the masses in Guns, and Traffic and drugs etc etc! I KNOW who these people Think they are, BUT, THERE IS “ONLY” ONE GOD, and HIS NAME (PHIL 2:9-10 KJV) is Jesus Christ, NOT city Council, or Senator or. . . .JUST one more FREEKING REASON, I hate Virginia, “COMMON FREEKING” WEALTH”

  49. PoqVaUSA says:

    How is it that Virginia can place tolls on a US Interstate Highway? Pennsylvania has had tolls on a Turnpike for decades, to collect fees from truck (and cars) that traverse from one end of the state to the other without paying taxes or even buying gas. The Penn. Turnpike is a controlled access road, which issues (or at least used to) a punch card when entering the Turnpike, and charges accordingly when leaving. You can try to drive parallel to the Turnpike, but the only way to avoid paying for driving the Turnpike is to not drive the Turnpike.

    If the tolls are set up to collect money as a person drives through, then of course people will seek ways to go around the tolls. Tolls on driving through are a bad idea for that reason, but tracking vehicles that leave the highway and then come back on is even a much worse idea! Do I need to give up my privacy just to drive the road?

    The entry cards and exit fees are generic, and say nothing about the identity of a vehicle. Tracking which vehicles get on and off of the highway is a totally different situation. Who comes up with these ideas?

    If I-81 were declared to be a Virginia Turnpike, and entrance and exit were tracked anonymously via entrance cards, I could talk about this in terms of the merits of raising revenue and how that revenue would be spent (preferably in adding lanes for the entire length of the Turnpike). As long as the planned implementation is as screwed up as is described in this article, I can see no justification for following that plan.

  50. Bonnie Stevenson says:

    I’ll seriously consider moving to another state. As I often said before this suggested toll, “It’s time to move to Idaho and get away from this east coast nonsense with congestion, taxes and creeping socialism”. Government is supposed to serve the people and not rule it! You can’t do this and you can’t have that and give me more money! What happened to freedom! NO to toll roads!

  51. Geneww38 says:

    Journalists have disappeared from the propaganda run mass media and newspapers. This headline news was discovered from a NYS email.

    We better wake up and start praying for a Godly awakening and new legislators. We can’t blame Satanic people who do not know the truth.

    In Judges 7, Gideon’s 300 men (plus God) defeated 135,000 superior Midianites in one day. This same God is alive today and forever.

    What mere president ever attempted to keep every campaign promise? That team still has 2 to 6 years to keep their remaining promises. Until this election, every metric was improving. Think about that.

    1. Geneww38 says:

      I came from NYS in 2001 and VA did not appear corrupt.
      Our answer is not to run from wickedness but to stand firm, pray, and start looking for Godly and patriotic legislators who love our Constitution.
      We must then work to have them replace the criminals funded by the Washington cabal .

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