Oklahoma Turnpike Authority delays vote on toll increases due to pending lawsuit

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OKLAHOMA CITY – The Oklahoma Turnpike Authority has delayed voting on a proposal to increase tolls in the state because of a pending lawsuit.

The authority’s board decided Tuesday not to vote on a proposal that would increase tolls by a total of 17 percent over three years. The increase would help pay off bond debt to fund new construction around the state.

But last week, attorney Jerry Fent filed suit over the issuance of the bonds, arguing that a 1987 law that authorizes the construction of turnpikes violates a constitutional requirement that laws deal with only one subject.

A hearing for that case is set for Sept. 20.

State officials last year announced plans to issue $900 million worth of bonds during the next few years to expand and renovate Oklahoma’s turnpike system.