House gives preliminary approval to transportation sales tax
The Missouri House Tuesday gave first round approval to a ballot issue that seeks a one-cent sales tax increase that would be used to fund the state’s transportation needs for at least the next ten years.
By a voice vote, House members perfected House Joint Resolution 68, sponsored by Rep. Dave Hinson (R-St. Clair). The resolution would allow Missouri voters to have a say on a sales tax increase of 1 percent for a period of ten years. At the end of the ten year period, the sales tax would come up for another public vote.
Proceeds from the sales tax will help the Missouri Department of Transportation meet the transportation needs of the state for the next decade. Without a new funding source of some kind, MoDOT officials expect state gas tax revenues and federal funding to drop off to levels where only minimal maintenance work will be performed.
The bill is supported by a broad coalition of contractors, engineering firms and unions. The proceeds from the sales tax is expected to fix roads and bridges and provide construction jobs well into the next decade.
Representatives were able to beat back an amendment that sought to keep any funds from the sales tax away from bicycle path projects. But they also made the amendment subject to Hancock Amendment limits.
The resolution requires a final vote before moving on to the State Senate.