A bill drafted to facilitate the creation of high-occupancy toll lanes on the State Route 91 freeway in Riverside County cleared the Assembly Monday on a 74-to-1 vote. The Senate has already approved the bill, but it will need to reconsider it because of technical amendments added in the Assembly.
The Orange County Transportation Authority currently operates a variable-toll lane on its portion of the 91 freeway. The express lanes were originally built as a public-private partnership, but OCTA bought out the private owners in 2003 to remove what had become a politically unpopular non-compete clause that limited the ability to expand the non-toll lanes on the highway.
SB 1316 would allow the Riverside County Transportation Commission to build high-occupancy toll lanes on its segment of the freeway and authorize it to issue revenue bonds to finance the project.
The bill would also allow OCTA to collect tolls on its segment through 2065, instead of its current 2030 deadline.