Proos: Efficiencies to be found to fund our roads

Lawmaker says Senate plan a step in the right direction

Senator John Proos

Senator John Proos

LANSING, Mich. —In response to the passage of a state Senate plan to fix Michigan roads, Sen. John Proos R-St. Joseph, released the following statement:

“Earlier this year I supported a budget for fiscal years 2015-2016 which prioritized the road repairs our state so badly needs.

“That legislation included a 25 percent increase, or $400 million in direct road funding without increasing taxes on hardworking Michiganders — and this is on top of the $3.7 billion that we are already spending on roads this year.

“Today, I also supported Senate Bill 414 and House Bills 4610-4613, which earmarked current income tax revenue toward roads; allowed for competitive bidding at the state, local and township level; increased road warrantees on road builders; and established equity between traditional and alternative fuel vehicles.

“I have always believed that prioritizing taxpayer dollars and treating all motorists fairly must be our focus when it comes to funding our roads.

“However, I could not support the gas tax increase because of the adverse impact that these increases would have on our border counties. Once implemented fully, Michigan residents would pay 34 cents per gallon in motor fuels tax when compared to 18 cents per gallon in Indiana.

“This will drive motorists and businesses across our border into Indiana and hurt our hard-fought economic recovery.

“Debate will continue between the Michigan House and Senate as we work to fix our state’s roads and infrastructure.”

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Editor’s Note — Audio comments by Proos will be available on the senator’s website at www.SenatorJohnProos.com. Click on “Audio” under the Media Center tab.