The editorial “Watchdog group raises questions about turnpike” (Feb. 1) was right on. Someone needs to watch the Maine Turnpike Authority.

You can travel from Auburn to Sabattus, 10-plus miles, at no charge, but enter the turnpike at West Gardiner, I-295, travel to Augusta, 6-plus miles, and you have to pay a dollar.

That is the MTA’s version of equity and fairness.

Private firms constructing complexes such as the pit stop on Route 126 in West Gardiner (spending $38 million) would never get away with the botched-up highway improvements.

It is amazing how many cars come off the highway and do not obey the stop signs. There have been many accidents and near misses that I have witnessed. When someone gets seriously hurt or killed, there will be a study done, recognizing the mess created when realigning traffic was done on the back of an envelope in a back room deal and OK’d by the Maine Department of Transportation for the price of a meal.

Then, the interchange will be reconstructed and the state highway fund will carry the funding burden.

How many rest areas on major state highways are constructed with no access from the highway? That area is blessed with two major highways and no direct access from either one.

One has to wonder if that happens only in Maine and only because the MTA doesn’t have to answer to anyone.

There needs to be some oversight, and it shouldn’t be by MTA’s partners.

Cal Brown, Litchfield


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