February 6, 2006

South Carolina governor OKs tolls for new road

MIAMI (Reuters) - South Carolina Gov. Mark Sanford on
Monday signed a bill authorizing tolls for financing a 90-mile
(145-km) stretch of the planned Interstate 73 to extend into
the state's Grand Strand tourist region.

South Carolina expects its estimated share of the road to
cost about $2 billion. State officials have said toll revenues
would allow the highway in northeast South Carolina to be built
within eight years.

State lawmakers, who quickly passed the law introduced last
month, have said the project would require issuance of bonds.
But a spokesman for the Republican governor was not immediately
available to discuss the amount and timing of possible bond

The northeastern corner of South Carolina already draws
more than 13 million visitors annually and the highway would
give all of South Carolina an economic lift, Sanford said in a
news release.