Author: Damian Wallace, MBCN Staff Writer
Free toll road access for Veterans
July 25th the Central Texas Regional Mobility Authority announced they will be waiving fees for certain classes of veterans. Executive director Mike Hieligenstien announced that the board of directors passed the program and they are happy to be able to offer this to veterans that have served their country.
Texas HB3139 was passed in 2009 which allowed toll road authorities to offer “certain” classes of veterans toll discounts. This plan was designed to assist veterans with getting to and from VA medical facilities.
In 2012 TXTAG along with HCTRA came on board with the same program and offer the discounts that travel on Houston and Dallas area toll roads. To qualify for these discounts a veteran must be eligible to obtain specialty plates from the TX DMV and the veteran must be present in the vehicle.
What does this have to do with Brazoria County?
Brazoria County Toll Road Authority is forecasting a June 2019 completion of their toll road from county road 58 in Manvel that will connect with the new construction in Harris County. Manvel resident John Jones says he is unclear why Brazoria County leaders wanna be behind the curve and be reactionary, “why just do something halfway, this tollway should have begun at Highway 6.” Many other residents feel the same way citing the traffic on Highway 288.
So that leads us to question, will BCTRA stand with veterans and waive toll fees, or will the greed to pay off their newly acquired debt prevent the BCTRA and County Commissioners from passing the discounts along to veterans? But why stop at only recognizing disabled veterans, be a leader in the state and pass it on to all veterans.
Jones says he believes that if Brazoria County leads the way maybe other toll authorities will follow.
Now the proverbial football is in the hands of Brazoria County, we will be waiting for your answer!