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North Carolina House passes bill ending ferry tolls; proposes ferry-improvement funds

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RALEIGH, North Carolina — The North Carolina House has reinforced its opposition to tolls on state-run coastal ferries.

The chamber voted overwhelmingly Wednesday night in favor of a measure that removes the authority of the Department of Transportation to set and prescribe tolls.

There are currently tolls on three of the seven routes. Under last year's budget law, the Board of Transportation was allowed to charge tolls on the others and retain all toll revenues to buy ferry vessel replacements. This year's House budget includes similar language to Wednesday's bill, but the Senate budget contains no such changes.

Both House measures instead would set aside money for ferry improvements and expand DOT's ability to use sponsorships and advertising to generate funds.

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