A Kansas City state lawmaker who serves on the House Transportation Committee is looking forward to hearing Missouri Governor Mike Parson’s transportation plan during Wednesday’s State of the State Address.

State Rep. Greg Razer speaks on the Missouri House floor in May 2017 (file photo courtesy of Tim Bommel at House Communications)

Governor Parson (R) will deliver the 2019 State of the State Address Wednesday afternoon at 3, before a rare joint session of the Legislature. We’ll carry the address live on Missourinet.

State Rep. Greg Razer, D-Kansas City, says transportation is not a partisan issue.

“It was personally very disappointing to see Proposition D fail but it did,” Razer says. “So now we’ve got to go back to the drawing board, and I’m willing to work with Democrats, Republicans, House, Senate.”

Missourians rejected a ten-cent gasoline tax increase by about 173,000 votes in November.

Razer also says the aging I-70 bridge in mid-Missouri’s Rocheport is failing. He tells Missourinet he’s concerned about potential three to eight-hour backups at the bridge, because of Proposition D’s failure.

“It’s going to be awful for Columbia, for mid-Missouri, for traffic moving between St. Louis and Kansas City,” says Razer.

The bridge was built in 1960. The Missouri Department of Transportation (MoDOT) director is warning about future massive traffic backups on I-70, near the bridge.

MoDOT Director Patrick McKenna told the Columbia Chamber of Commerce in December that the agency only has funding for a $15 million bridge rehabilitation, because of the failure of the ten-cent gas tax increase.

McKenna says MoDOT doesn’t have the $200 million needed to replace the bridge.

Razer, who grew up in the Bootheel town of Cooter, also says transportation is not an urban versus rural issue.

“This is Route O in (southeast Missouri’s) Pemiscot County where my mom lives. You know, if that one-lane bridge fails and an ambulance has to, God forbid, come out and get her it’s going to have to go ten miles around to get to her,” Razer says.

Missouri’s 17-cent gasoline tax hasn’t been increased since 1996 and the state’s vehicle license and registration fees haven’t changed in more than 30 years.

Click here to listen to the full interview between Missourinet’s Brian Hauswirth and State Rep. Greg Razer, D-Kansas City, which was recorded on January 9, 2019 at the Statehouse in Jefferson City:

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