Response questioned
The Tampa Tribune

David Heckman’s response (“A bad idea,” Your Views, Sept. 6) to my recent op-ed (“Tolls less regressive than gas taxes,” Views, Aug. 31) conflated mine with a separate article that appeared in the paper, while still managing to misquote the article he was attempting to attack.

Contra Heckman, I never argued for a particular tolling institutional arrangement nor did I mention laws benefiting labor unions, which do, in fact, raise total road operations, maintenance and construction costs.

My argument was that Congress should repeal the law currently prohibiting states from tolling their Interstate segments, which are owned by the states, for authorized reconstruction and widening purposes and allow states to experiment with a variety of funding and management approaches.

Such a proposal, as I noted, has been widely endorsed by transportation practitioners across the political spectrum, including the U.S. Department of Transportation under President Obama.

You can go back and read it yourself and note the stark contrast between Heckman’s reading of it, and complaints about it, and the actual text.