LANSING – The Michigan Department of Transportation would need to work with an outside consulting firm to study the possibility of bringing toll roads to Michigan under legislation that passed the Senate Jan. 28 as part of a seven-bill transportation package.

Sen. John Bizon’s (R-Battle Creek) SB 517 would require the study include revenue projections, optimal tolling rates, vehicle counts and other information.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey said after the measure passed, 31-7, that no option should be eliminated completely from the discussion when it comes to finding ways to raise revenue for road repair. Shirkey also sees the bill as part of the Legislature’s job of oversight. It’s about gathering information on what is possible before making final decisions.

“There are some areas in Michigan where it might work, especially with new technology. We should slow down; don’t overreact and let the process play out,” he said.

This story was published by the Small Business Association of Michigan.