Topeka, KS – Kansas is currently without a transportation improvement plan, after recently wrapping up a 10-year project. Lawmakers are looking at ways of funding a new long-term, statewide plan.
The two previous 10-year plans had real benefits, says Senate President Stephen Morris, a Hugoton Republican, and member of the Special Committee on Transportation.
Morris: "[It's] truly significant on the amount of infrastructure that we've added, the jobs we've provided and the stimulus to the economy. Very, Very good reasons for passing a comprehensive transportation plan this year."
But the trick will be paying for it. Morris doesn't think a general tax increase is feasible, but believes user fees like fuel taxes and car registration fees may be a better choice. House Minority Leader, Lawrence Democrat Paul Davis, hopes Democrats and Republicans in the legislature will be able to see eye to eye.
Davis: "No body likes to increase taxes or user fees, but we have to pay for our roads somehow. If we don't do that we're going to be faced with potholes all over the place and bridges that are on the verge of collapse."
The committee is reviewing plans that would require raising an additional 3 to 6 billion dollars.