Florida Editorial: Too many toll road questions on Senate Bill 7068

Florida Senate President Bill Galvano has made the construction of three major toll roads — two that would have a direct impact on Marion County and its North Florida neighbors — a priority of this legislative session, but that does not mean it is a good plan.

The Senate Appropriations Committee held a hearing on Senate Bill 7068 Thursday, and despite the senators voting 20-0 in support of the measure, the hearing ended with more questions than answers.

Galvano wants to extend the Suncoast Parkway from Citrus County to the Georgia line, extend the Florida Turnpike (possibly through Dunnellon) to the Suncoast Parkway and build a new road from Polk County (Lakeland) to Collier County (Naples). Backed by the state’s road builders, construction industry, Florida Chamber of Commerce and the state’s ports, the plan tentatively calls for construction to begin in 2022.