Road-funding vote stalled in Michigan Senate

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"We need how much for roads?" Opposition from Democrats in the Michigan Senate and a state business group stalled a vote today on a proposal for increases to boost funding for road infrastructure. From The Detroit News

The plan, on the Senate’s agenda for a third straight session day, was held up amid pushback from Democrats and a conservative business group.

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A five-bill package that would raise at least $1.2 billion more annually by 2018 through a higher fuel tax is on the Senate’s agenda.

It's unclear when the proposal will be voted on, but Senate Majority Leader Randy Richardville's spokesperson told the News it's the Monroe Republicn's "preference" to pass the package of bills this week. Democrats hold 12 of the Senate's 38 votes.

The proposal would boost road funding by $1.2 billion to $1.5 billion annually. Under the plan, the state's 19-cents-per-gallon gasoline tax and 15-cents-per-gallon diesel tax would be replaced with a 9.5 percent levy on the wholesale price of gasoline, which would increase to 15.5 percent by 2018.

Richardville's plan amends a funding package the Michigan House passed last month, which raises $450 million for roads, the News reports.

By 2018, the changes equate to a 25-cent-per-gallon increase, the Detroit Free Press reports. Citing data from the American Petroleum Institute, the Freep previously reported the Richardville proposal would make Michigan have the highest taxes on fuel in the country.


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