For Immediate Release Ross Woodstock
March 3, 2015 Kolt Communications, Inc.
Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce Announces its Support of Proposal 1 to Increase Road Funding in the State of Michigan
(Lansing, MI) – The Lansing Regional Chamber of Commerce (LRCC) Board of Directors today has announced its support of Proposal 1, which asks Michigan voters to increase the state sales tax to support an additional $1.2 billion in road and infrastructure improvements in the state. In announcing its support for the proposal, which will appear on a May 5 special election ballot, the LRCC emphasized the importance that rebuilding and maintaining Michigan’s infrastructure is a key factor in continuing to grow the Lansing region’s economy.
“It's the Board of Directors belief that investing in roads and infrastructure is crucial to enhancing economic development and investment, job creation, and overall quality of life for residents and businesses in our region,” said LRCC Board Chairman John Brown. "Quality, well maintained infrastructure is simply fundamental to a thriving economy and it is critical and necessary that we take action to rebuild our state’s roads now.”
The May 5 ballot proposal asks Michigan voters whether they approve of an increase in the state’s sales tax from 6% to 7% and a constitutional amendment to dedicate all future gas taxes to roads, unlike the way the state’s roads are funded now. The sales tax increase is part of an estimated $1.9 billion overall road funding proposal that the Department of Transportation will administer in 2015/16.
While offering support for the road funding plan advanced by Governor Rick Snyder and the Michigan legislature, the LRCC board acknowledges that there are concerns in the business community regarding certain aspects of the proposal. Chief among businesses concerns is the potential for road conditions to deteriorate further if voters reject the ballot proposal.
“Like many we were disappointed that the Legislature could not come to agreement last year on a viable plan for long term and sustainable funding mechanism that would enable Michigan’s roads and bridges to be properly maintained,” said LRCC president and CEO Tim Daman. “While this is by no means a perfect proposal, we believe it presents the best path forward for improving increasingly poor, unsafe and costly road conditions.”