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news release

P.O. Box 600
Trenton, NJ

Contact: Brendan Gill or Erin Phalon
609-530-4280

RELEASE: May 14, 2006


Hybrid vehicle use in N.J. Turnpike High Occupancy Vehicle lanes to take effect Monday

(Trenton) New Jersey Department of Transportation (NJDOT) Commissioner Kris Kolluri today announced that starting Monday, May 15, the State of New Jersey will permit hybrid vehicles to use lanes designated for High Occupancy Vehicles (HOV) on the New Jersey Turnpike.

“I encourage New Jersey motorists to take advantage of HOV lanes by using hybrids and by carpooling,” said Governor Corzine. “This policy, along with providing additional mass transit options and expanding carpool programs, reflects my commitment to addressing the burden of rising gas prices and encouraging fuel conservation.”

Hybrid vehicles consistent with last year’s federal transportation bill,
“Safe, Accountable, Flexible, Efficient Transportation Equity Act: A Legacy for Users,” will be permitted to travel in HOV lanes. HOV lanes are located on the New Jersey Turnpike north- and south-bound between Interchange 11 in Woodbridge and Interchange 14 in Newark and operate on weekdays from 6 a.m. to 9 a.m. northbound and 4 p.m. to 7 p.m. southbound. New Jersey State Police will continue to enforce the exclusive use of HOV lanes by hybrids, alternative fuel vehicles and vehicles carrying three or more occupants.

“Governor Corzine’s program to allow Hybrid vehicles to travel in HOV lanes creates an additional incentive for motorists to use alternative fuel
sources,” said Commissioner Kolluri. “This policy not only encourages
fuel-efficiency but also promotes the expansion of new technologies to
increase fuel conservation.”

Governor Corzine has taken a variety of steps to provide relief from rising fuel prices. In addition to permitting Hybrid use in HOV lanes, he has
committed to expanding mass transit ridership, increased ridesharing and
carpool benefits, announced the creation of the post of Director of Energy Savings, ensured reliable delivery of fuel to gas stations, proposed a 0.4% surcharge when purchasing vehicles that have an EPA rating of less than 19 miles per gallon and stepped up gas station monitoring to ensure that station owners and attendants are adhering to consumer protection laws.

“The partnership between the State agencies that crafted and implement this policy should serve as an example to motorists statewide,” said DEP
Commissioner Lisa P. Jackson. “The public can conserve natural resources and save money by carpooling and opting for fuel-efficient vehicles.”

Just last week the New Jersey Turnpike Authority modified its regulations to permit the use of its HOV lanes by hybrid vehicles, according to Michael Lapolla, executive director of the New Jersey Turnpike Authority.

“In the face of the rising gas costs we’re happy to be able to assist
Governor Corzine in his efforts to provide relief to New Jersey’s
motorists,” Lapolla said.

For a list of qualifying hybrid vehicles, please visit:
http://www.state.nj.us/turnpike/index-hybrid.htm

 
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  Department of Transportation
  P.O. Box 600
  Trenton, NJ 08625-0600
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  Last Updated:  May 31, 2006