State Rep. Brad Slagh (R-Zeeland) has introduced a bill to make the state of Michigan more customer focused by requiring state-owned infrastructure to accept cash for all tolls.
A recent Michigan Department of Transportation press release announced that drivers crossing the Bluewater Bridge would no longer be able to pay cash at the toll plaza. The cash ban was a temporary safety measure during the early days of the COVID-19 pandemic, but now the department is making it a permanent policy.
Slagh said the change to eliminate cash is inconvenient for drivers and believes it should not be permanent.
“Many of our constituents do not use or even have debit or credit cards, so requiring their use to access state-owned infrastructure is misguided,” Slagh said. “Every cash note states, ‘This note is legal tender for all debts, public and private.’ Therefore, our state and local governments should accept it as a payment method.”
Slagh’s bill, named the “Acceptance of Cash in Tolling Act,” would require the acceptance of cash as a form of payment for any tolling on public infrastructure owned, operated or managed by the state, state transportation department or any other state or local government entity.
Rep. Slagh invites residents to join him at his upcoming morning office hours on Friday, Dec. 15 at the following times: 8 to 9 a.m. at The Farmhouse Restaurant, 9:30 to 10:30 a.m. at Hudsonville City Hall, and 11 a.m. to noon at Big Apple Bagels.
“Some $3.9 billion dollars were added to the budget at the last minute without any discussion or deliberation whatsoever; this elitist spending mentality is a disservice to the people of Michigan, and it’s not the way state government is supposed to work under our representative democracy,” Slagh said.
Local office hours are an opportunity for constituents to meet face-to-face with Rep. Slagh to share their thoughts, questions, and concerns. No appointments are necessary to attend.