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Protesters Call New MDX Tolls "Tollmageddon"

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MIAMI (CBSMiami) – Monday marks one month since the new Miami-Dade Expressway tolls were put into place, a day which a group of protesters mark as, "Tollmageddon."

Monday, the group of protesters is set to gather on Red Road and the 836-Expressway.

The group, called TEAM305, is trying to get attention and raise concern about the added tolls on the 836 and 112. They believe the increase in tolls is just too much.

Robert Vallejo, a motorist, said the added tolls, "doesn't make me happy."

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Vallejo works as a massage therapist in Coral Gables but lives in Miami Lakes. The extra tolls on the 836 stress him out.

"I'm spending about an additional $30 a month just with the new tolls they've implemented cause I have to drive back and forth to work," said Vallejo.

Tony Rodriguez said he's spending an additional $60-$80 a month because of the added tolls.

"It's increased quite a lot," said Rodriguez.

The protestors are hoping to get the current tolls decreased—and let the people decide.

Chris Wills, organizer of the protest, said, "our message is not to not have tolls, just no more tolls without the approval of voters."

In addition to protesting, the group started petition online, #NoMoreTolls.

MDX said the new tolls on the 836 and the 112 would mean an additional $53 million a year. That money, MDX said, goes back into maintaining and improving those roads.

MDX runs the 836, the Dolphin, the 112, north of the airport, the 874, the Don Shula, the 878, called the Snapper Creek and the 924 which is the Gratigny Parkway.

MDX was created for the sole purpose of maintaining, operating, and improving those five roads. But, the protesters questions, at what cost.

"We are all impacted by it," said Wills.

Protest organizers say even if you don't drive those toll roads, businesses that do will pass along the extra expense to you. They are hoping law makers and MDX will slow down and also, in the future, allow voters to decide.

In the past two years, according to protesters, Miami-Dade voters have had the opportunity to vote on several tax increases, including for repairs to Miami-Dade Public Schools, for the Pets' Trust and for repairs to the county courthouse. They believe tolls should get the same consideration.

MDX has not commented on the protest.



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