Posts Tagged ‘road funding’
MAC Executive Director Tim McGuire used an appearance on “The Big Show” with Michael Patrick Shiels to make the case that only new revenue will propel the state out of its roads crisis.
“”Do we want dirt roads? … The point is, if you are going to fix the roads, you have to raise revenue. … We have to raise some revenues to pay for the roads. It’s just gotta be done,” McGuire said.
MAC’s Board of Directors, made up of county commissioners from across the state, has long supported a tax increase to generate the new dollars necessary to jump-start maintenance on our crumbling roads.
The Legislature’s refusal to fund new investments in infrastructure has cost Michigan taxpayers more than $270 million since June 12 of this year, says a coalition committed to road funding reform.
The Just Fix the Roads Coalition unveiled a calculator widget that shows how much inaction has cost residents.
“’As each day passes, that figure climbs by $2.7 million, or $1 billion per year. Faced with that cost of delay, Michigan’s legislators must find a way to invest at least $2 billion more annually on roads, or the public will continue to bear the brunt of their inaction. As legislators continue to put off road funding, the cost of repairs will escalate even further. It is a major funding dilemma that will only get worse over time,” said Mike Nystrom, executive vice president of Michigan Infrastructure and Transportation Association, a member of the coalition, along with MAC and many others.
Why is MAC pushing so hard to get the Legislature to provide a statewide vote on a 1-cent sales tax for transportation?
Take a look at the chart above, particularly the dotted portion of the green line.
Trunkline roads are transportation speak for main roads. These are the roadways that carry our commerce, our schoolchildren, our work force and our emergency vehicles. If your main roads are bad, expect life to be harder all the way around.
And while the vast majority of Michigan’s trunkline roads are deemed in good shape today, the trend is ominous indeed, according to the state Transportation Department. By the end of this decade, fewer than half of such roads would be in good or fair shape, if additional resources are not found. County and local road officials can work as hard as they can and be as clever as possible to stretch a dollar to fix local roads, but that work will mean much less if the major roads aren’t maintained.
The MAC Board of Directors, aware of these trends, voted at the beginning of the year to have MAC staffers make the case for a 1-cent increase in the state sales tax – a penny for the roads – to generate vital new dollars.
See more about the importance and condition of Michigan roads at http://milocalroads.com/