PEI

P.E.I. premier to address bridge 'tariff' with PM

P.E.I. Premier Dennis King met with Sen. Percy Downe on Monday to talk about how to reduce the toll on the Confederation Bridge and the fare for Northumberland Ferries, which he likens to a "tariff" for Islanders.

Dennis King on board with Sen. Percy Downe's efforts to reduce fares for bridge and ferry

It costs $47.75 for regular vehicles to cross the Confederation Bridge from P.E.I. to New Brunswick. (Kelley Edwards/CBC)

P.E.I. Premier Dennis King says he plans to discuss bridge tolls with Prime Minister Justin Trudeau when he meets with him early next month.

King said bridge tolls, which he said are like "tariffs" for Islanders, were an issue he heard about frequently during the provincial election campaign in April.

"It's surprising the number of people who raised this as their first concern," he said. "It's probably something I heard more than any other issue so I would like to have a further conversation with the prime minister to discuss what can be done."

King met with Sen. Percy Downe on Monday to talk about how to reduce the toll on Confederation Bridge and the fare for Northumberland Ferries.

Senator suggests $20 fare

Downe has been lobbying Ottawa for the elimination of the bridge toll, or at least a reduction of the fee for the bridge and the ferry to $20.

It is kind of a tariff that increases the cost of living here in Prince Edward Island.— Premier Dennis King

Vehicles currently pay $47.75 for the bridge and $79 for the ferry, round trip. 

"This toll and the rate that it's at really amounts to a tariff for Islanders, whether you're in business or whether you're a private citizen," King said.

"It is kind of a tariff that increases the cost of living here in Prince Edward Island."

King said he likes what Downe is suggesting as solutions, such as using surplus funds from the federal Investing in Canada Plan, to reduce the bridge toll and ferry fare.

More P.E.I. news

With files from Angela Walker

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