Richard Barnes

A wise and frugal government which shall restrain men from injuring one another, which shall leave them otherwise free to regulate their own pursuits of industry and improvement, and shall not take from the mouth of labor the bread it has earned. This is the sum of good government. – Thomas Jefferson


Entries in Tolls (2)


Tax em all

Remember ousted politician Deb Pignatelli?

She was the one who ran in Merrimack, knowing how big the toll issue was there then turned around after being elected giving the town the finger saying it wasn't "politically feasible" to eliminate the tolls she campaigned on ending.

This week I stumbled across a letter to the editor from her husband Michael Pignatelli worth some discussion.

High-income earners, as well as most Americans, overwhelmingly support a modest 4 percent tax increase on those who can pay.


Voters will choose America’s future next November. In the meantime, the debt grows. The economy doesn’t.

Before I dig into responding to this above sentiment I would like to stress that I do not hold Deb accountable for her husband's statements and vice versa but from her record it's clear they both think similarly.

That said, I have to wonder when I see statements like this why we aren't seeing liberals in mass sending checks to the government offering up an additional 4% of their incomes.  Why does it take the force of a gun to get them to pony up if as Michael states here so many people want to do this?

The next part that caught my attention was his statement that this 4% should be imposed on "those who can pay".  Who determines that and what do they base it on?  Clearly Mr. Pignatelli feels others know better then he what is best for his money.

I love the conclusion, that debt grows while the economy doesn't.  Perhaps it's because too much of our money is already being wasted by the government.  Perhaps because we as a society have grown to a point where we reward failure and people who sit home doing nothing feel entitled to the income of others that we have the problem of growing debt and a shrinking economy.

One only has to look at the statements from the occupy groups to see this.  They expect us to pay for their college, pay for their housing, and so on.  If everything in life was given to you then what incentive would you have to work hard?  For that matter what incentive would you have to work at all?



Open Letter To David Campbell About Tolls

This is an open letter to state rep David Campbell who has proposed moving the Bedford toll booth further south in an attempt to catch northbound motorists before they could exit to the new airport road.  You can read the full story about this HERE.


Representative David Campbell,

I am writing to express I strongly object to your plan to move the tolls in an effort to capture the airport traffic for a number of reasons.

One of the biggest reasons is efficiency.  If our government needs to collect money from us in the form of taxes and tolls it should look to do so in the most effective manor possible.  Tolls are not it.  Roughly a third to a half of the money collected goes into running the toll booth itself.  That seems to me government for the sake of having government.  And in our current economy with so many people out of work or taking huge pay cuts and salary freezes I would hope we would want to find ways to collect in ways without as much overhead.

Our state already has a gas tax, increasing that by just a few cents would allow the state to collect as much as the tolls without the overhead.  This would also achieve the tax equality which we do not have now.  People living in certain parts of the state pay every time they get on the state highway system but people living in other communities pay nothing.  The justification I continue to hear is that we're capturing out of state money.  The Union Leader mentions that 22 percent of the airport traffic comes from Massachusetts.  If that is the case then why is there no proposal for tolls right at the boarder?  With all the traffic heading into southern Nashua, I would think we'd capture even a larger portion of out of state money.  But even that is something I would disagree with as we could do the same with a gas tax in a more efficient way.

The last yet one of the most compelling reasons to push to eliminate our toll system is because of the harm tolls cause to our environment.  By forcing cars to slow down and idle and then speed back up, they use more gas and create more pollution which I would hope we all want to find ways to eliminate as best we can.

I would hope that you and the rest of the House Public Works and Highway Committee would give serious consideration to finding ways to remove the tolls for the reasons I've spelled out here.

Thank you for your consideration,

Rick Barnes


I strongly suggest others who agree with me about the need to eliminate our antiquated and inefficent toll booth system to write rep David Campbell at

Or contact other members of the House Public Works and Highway Committee listed out HERE (