The House sponsor of a proposed sales tax increase to support transportation says he plans to take up the three-fourths-of-a-cent tax proposal passed by the Senate, and try to get it passed in the House.
If the House approves that proposal without any changes, it would go to voters in November or in a special election.
The three-fourths cent proposal would generate about $534-million annually. The House had passed a one-cent tax increase over ten years that was projected to generate about $800-million annually for various forms of transportation projects.
Representative Dave Hinson (R-St. Clair) says three-quarters of a cent should be plenty for the Transportation Department.
“Three-quarters will get a lot of major projects done that are needed to be done across the state,” says Hinson. “Of course it will leave us about a billion dollars short of what we were hoping for, but you know in ten years the voters will get a chance to review what MODOT’s done and see if they want to continue it on.”
Hinson doesn’t think the three-fourths cent tax proposal will have any trouble being passed in the House.
“I think actually we may pick up some votes,” says Hinson. “We had 96 ‘yes’ votes when we third read it in the House and we’ll probably be, I would think, around 100.”
Majority Floor Leader John Diehl (R-Town and Country) says the House likely won’t take up the transportation tax issue again until the situation with a tax cut proposal, SB 509, has been settled. Governor Jay Nixon (D) is anticipated to veto that bill and the Republican legislative majority is expected to attempt to then override his veto.