The Indiana legislature approved an infrastructure funding measure that increases the state’s diesel and gasoline tax by 10 cents a gallon on July 1, while ensuring that all of the money gained from that fuel tax bump is completely dedicated to roads by 2025.
Gov. Eric Holcomb – elevated to the position last January to replace Mike Pence, who is now Vice President of the U.S. – indicated he will sign the measure projected to boost road funding by $1.2 billion a year by 2024.
“I congratulate state lawmakers … for their plan that will strengthen our global reputation as they ‘Crossroads of America,’” Holcomb noted in a statement.
The legislation calls for the raising of fuel taxes by up to 1 cent annually for seven years to adjust for inflation, hikes vehicle registration fees and gives the governor the power to add tolls, if approved by the State Budget Committee and/or the state receives permission from the federal government.
A number of other states are debating similar moves as they search for ways to increase their infrastructure budgets.
In Tennessee, Gov. Bill Haslam’s transportation plan, which includes the first fuel-tax increase for the state since 1989, appears heading for final approval this week.
Both the House and Senate approved the legislation last week, but the House must pass it again due to non-transportation-related changes the Senate added to its version.
It will raise the tax on diesel by 10 cents a gallon and tax on gasoline 6 cents over three years, while also cutting taxes in other areas. The governor has a list of 962 road and bridge projects throughout the state that require attention, he said
Elsewhere, lawmakers in are Colorado lawmakers are struggling to reach a compromise agreement as they try to generate $3.5 billion in additional funding for roads and bridges.
Though the House passed a transport measure in March, public comments from lawmakers indicate a main sticking point is a 0.5 percentage-point hike in the state’s sales tax.
If approved, the measure would need to be approved by voters. A Senate panel is scheduled to hold a hearing on the measure later this week.
South Carolina and Minnesota are among the others states currently debating legislation aimed at raising much-needed money for infrastructure repairs.