N.S. pays off bonds on tolled highway, says it's the first step in toll removal

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HALIFAX — Nova Scotia's minister of public works says the first step has been completed in removing the tolls from the Cobequid Pass on the Trans-Canada Highway.

Kim Masland told reporters today the province paid off the bonds for the 45-kilometre pass on Friday.

The province's only tolled stretch of highway was built through a public-private partnership and opened in 1997.

Masland says the government is committed to removing the $4 toll for drivers of all Nova Scotia registered vehicles, adding that the next step should come when she receives a report from an inter-departmental committee at the end of this month.

The minister says the committee is examining such things as the cost of the toll for drivers from outside the province and the employment status of the 50 full- and part-time workers who staff the toll plaza.

The former Liberal government indicated in 2018 that the tolls might be lifted for motorists by the end of 2019 by paying off the debt early. As of early last year, the current and long-term debt for the tolled highway was $41 million.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Nov. 3, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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