PORTSMOUTH, R.I. (WPRI) – A huge crowd filled an informational forum Monday night, on the plan to start charging drivers on the new Sakonnet River Bridge.
The state says it needs the money to pay for bridge maintenance, but a lot of people in the East Bay are not happy with the proposal.
"These structures need to be maintained, They're incredibly expensive structures and if we go another generation and we don't maintain them adequately and were in a position of having to replace them," said Michael Lewis, RIDOT Director.
The RIDOT held the hour long presentation at 7 p.m., and afterwards residents for the first time were able to publicly weigh in on the possibility of tolls.
"I think imposing tolls on the Sakonnet River bridge is discriminating and unfair... It was a quick fix by the legislature," said Bill Clark, Portsmouth Business Director.
Residents say the tolls will greatly impact the small business owners located on Aquidneck Island.
The second workshop will be held at Tiverton High School on Tuesday at 7 p.m.
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