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Leading Off (12/16/13)

New Tolls on LBJ Freeway Open. More than 240,000 vehicles are on LBJ daily. Now those drivers will be contending with a new toll structure on the 3.2-mile stretch between Preston Road and Greenville Avenue. And they’ll pay for it. Depending on the time of day and traffic level, the price to use certain lanes will rise or fall. For now, it won’t cost more than $.95 to drive that section, but down the line, there won’t be a ceiling in place. In Virginia’s Fairfax County, an area with a similar system, drivers have paid nearly $10 to drive 14 miles.

Two Men Scoop Up Land Next to I-35E, Sell It to the City For a Pretty Penny. Business partners Kevin Bollman and Wade Blackburn are in the real estate business. More specifically, they’ve been buying land in areas where Texas is looking to widen I-35E. Then, when the state comes calling, they sell. For, what we can assume, is a nice profit. They’ve been open about their method, too: use public information about the expansion project and buy along the highway corridor. Over five months in 2011, Denton County doled out more than $22 million to the duo. Over four months in 2012, the state paid for another four acres along Riverfront Boulevard in Dallas County, but records don’t communicate the price. As perhaps could be expected, folks are calling foul.

Another Woman Pulled Over By a Fake Cop. A woman driving in Denton at 2:30 a.m. Friday saw flashing lights in her rearview mirror and pulled over. While she was getting her license and registration, the fake police officer tried to assault her. So what are you supposed to do when someone pulls you over at 2:30 in the morning? One of the tips listed in the article says to make sure the vehicle is properly marked as a police car. But how can you do that? End of story: This is one of my worst nightmares. If people have tips beyond the obvious stay off the road always, I’d love to hear them.

Dog Debate Brewing in Plano. Whether pups can accompany their owners on patios in Plano is up for discussion, with a vote coming as soon as Tuesday. Allowing dogs to dine (or sit while their owners dine) al fresco is common practice in Dallas and other cities across the country. But when the Katy Trail Ice House Outpost opened this summer, that part of their patio mission got rejected. Plano Mayor Harry LaRosilliere called the opinionated “very passionate” on both sides of the argument.