No Road Funding Resolution, Senate Shoots Down Sales Tax Hike

LANSING, Mich. (June 11, 2014) – Lawmakers in the state Senate have had little success finding a funding solution for the state’s crumbling roads and bridges.

They’ve already rejected major pieces of legislation tied to new revenue.

Senate Joint Resolution A would have raised the state sales tax by 1 percent, then used the money to fund road repairs.

It was voted down 14 to 24.

The measure needed super majority votes in both the Senate and House to advance.

That would have put the issue on the November ballot where voters would have needed to give their approval before the measure took effect.

Senators also rejected House Bill 4630, which would have nixed discounts for vehicle registration fees.

Senate bills 752 and 847, which deal with restoration of $200 million homestead property tax credits passed.

However, those measures are tied to two others.

The first, House Bill 5477, gradually increases the gas tax, more than doubling it over five years from about 19 cents per gallon to more than 41 cents per gallon.

The second measure, House Bill 5493, would bring the tax on diesel fuel on par with the tax on gasoline.

It’s estimated that  HB 5477 would eventually lead to more than $1 billion in increased revenue.

Senators are expected to leave for summer break after finishing work on the budget.

After Thursday, they have just two working days on the schedule until after Labor Day.

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