|Fixing Michigan Roads|
Fixing MI Roads
This week, the Senate Republicans passed their solution to fixing our roads and infrastructure. The Senate Republican proposal aims to deliver a solution to a serious problem by providing critical funding, fixing the current system, and ensuring roads are maintained.
The Senate plan invests $700 million annually of current resources as well as generating new revenue through a gas and diesel tax, and guarantees road use fairness. Furthermore, fixing our broken road system by implementing competitive bidding, requiring the Michigan Department of Transportation and local road agencies to provide warranties on projects, and making sure more money goes directly to our transportation problem, is an important step toward maintaining our road system for future generations.
SB 414 (Schmidt)
· Guarantees $700 million of income tax revenue annually is used for transportation purposes before it reaches the General Fund budget.
· Creates a system for reducing the income tax rate with the ultimate goal of eliminating the personal income tax.
o General fund growth that is higher than the rate of inflation would be used to lower the income tax rate – putting money directly back in the pockets of taxpayers.
HB 4610 (Miller) and HB 4611 (Canfield)
· Allows townships contributing 50 percent or more toward a road project to require an RFP for pavement projects over $50,000 and gravel projects over $25,000 to encourage competitive bidding.
· In most instances, requires MDOT and local road agencies to competitively bid on all projects that are more than $100,000.
HB 4612 (Leutheueuser)
· Creates fairness by making hybrid and electric vehicle owners pay an annual registration fee since they are using the roads and filling up less. The additional registration fees are estimated to generate $1.7 million per year.
o Hybrid car owners will pay an additional $30 annually
o Electric car owners will pay an additional $100 annually
HB 4613 (Lauwers)
· Requires MDOT and local road agencies to secure warranties—where possible—for construction and preservation projects exceeding $1 million.
· Cuts allowable MDOT administrative costs from 10 percent down to 7 percent.
HB 4614 (LaFontaine), HB 4615 (VerHeulen) and HB 4616 (McCready)
· Institutes a process and fee schedule for taxing alternative fuels.
HB 4615 (VerHeulen) and HB 4616 (McCready)
· Three modest increases to the gas and diesel tax, totaling a 15 cent increase by 2017.
o Currently the gas tax is 19 cents-per-gallon. Once fully phased in, the gas tax will be 34 cents-per-gallon.
o There is a sunset 15 years after the new gas tax is fully phased in, this is so we can revisit and evaluate the plan and make adjustments if needed.
o When fully phased in, we will be dedicating enough money each year towards Michigan’s roads and bridges.
o Revenue from the new gas and diesel tax will go to fix, maintain and improve our roads and bridges.