GOP legislators pan Outer Banks toll bridge plan

RALEIGH, N.C. - North Carolina legislators are raising doubts about building the state's longest bridge to ease traffic on the Outer Banks.

The News and Observer of Raleigh reports ( ) Republican lawmakers meeting Friday said the state could not afford the planned toll bridge from mainland Currituck County to the northern Outer Banks.

The Mid-Currituck Bridge would be built in partnership with an international consortium of private developers. But GOP lawmakers don't like committing the state to pay as much as $28 million a year for four decades to cover an expected gap between costs and toll collections, mostly from tourists.

Several lawmakers pointed out that the cost of maintaining existing roads is behind plans to begin charging tolls on Interstate 95 to upgrade the East Coast's busy north-south highway.

(Copyright 2012 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

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