LANSING, Mich. (June 11, 2014) – As state legislators work toward finalizing spending plans for the next fiscal year, Democrats and Republicans are also trying to reach another major bipartisan compromise.
The deal in the works would fund road and bridge repairs.
While several plans have been floated, including a House-passed package that would raise an additional $450 million for infrastructure, the Senate has its sights set higher – more than $1.5 billion in increased funding.
That would be achieved through a gradually increasing gas tax and elimination of new-vehicle registration fee rebates, among other things.
Lawmakers are also considering an increase in the state sales tax and using that money for roads. Lawmakers would need two-thirds majorities in both chambers to put the issue before voters on the November ballot.
House Speaker Jase Bolger (R-Marshall) has said he’s waiting for action in the upper chamber before he takes a position.
Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville (R-Monroe) told FOX 17 that even though he is term-limited, he wouldn’t feel comfortable returning to his district, having to explain why there’s no plan for road funding.
Democrats have insisted some form of tax relief for low-income Michiganders must be part of a deal.