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Despite Announcement, No Pink Slips At The Pike

Despite announcing 100 layoffs of toll collectors six months ago, the Massachusetts Turnpike Authority has still not let any workers go.

Turnpike Executive Director Alan LeBovidge said at a hearing Monday that the process is slow because of collective bargaining rules, and could take six to 12 months.

LeBovidge says he's cut 120 management positions over the past year and has left 48 positions unfilled.

But the authority has also hired two high-priced staffers in the past few months, one with a salary of $90,000 and another earning $122,000 a year.

The cash-strapped 'Pike is set to increase tolls at the end of the month, then again later this year.

Critics say the authority officials haven't considered enough alternatives to toll increases.

Governor Patrick has been pushing for a 19-cent gas tax increase to raise funds for the state's debt-laden transportation systems in lieu of the toll hikes, as well as restructure the transit system by eliminating the Turnpike Authority altogether.

This program aired on March 17, 2009. The audio for this program is not available.

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