Transportation restructuring package introduced this week in Lansing
Friday, January 27, 2012
During last week’s State of the State message Governor Rick Snyder referenced a comprehensive package of bills that would be introduced in the near future to address the inadequate infrastructure needs of Michigan. Through Governor Snyder’s leadership and many months of determined effort by MITA staff and MITA members, a package of bills was introduced Thursday in the House and Senate on a bipartisan level. The bills include reforms on how taxpayer dollars are spent but also provide nearly an additional $1.4 billion annually for road and bridge projects in Michigan.
The proposed legislation, if passed, will raise the approximately $1.4 billion through registration fee adjustments and a tax on fuel at the wholesale level and a repeal of the current fuel tax. The proposed reforms within the package of bills include requiring funding recipients to demonstrate “best practices” as a condition of receiving future funds, more transparent reporting of benchmarks and projects, as well as expanded compliance with asset management plans.
The introduction of bills is an answer to the governor’s request to begin a conversation on how we can fix our state’s infrastructure needs. However, this is only the first step in a lengthy legislative process. The next step will be to hold committee hearings in both the House and Senate on the entire package of bills which will likely begin with the reforms and transit conversations first rather than funding increases. MITA staff, members and other industry representatives will be involved in every step throughout the entire process.
What we need now more than ever is our entire membership to contact their elected officials urging them to support this new comprehensive package of bills. A quick email, phone call or letter will go a long way in persuading state lawmakers that our infrastructure problems can’t be ignored any longer. While making contact, please consider a few points to make in your conversation.
- Include some background information. (Company you own / work for, number of years in the business, number of employees, etc.)
- Add a personal touch. (How long you’ve lived in the district, this issue is important to not only you but your family and community, etc.)
- Please support the proposed transportation package of bills (House Bills 5298 – 5314 and Senate Bills 909 – 921)
- Infrastructure needs can not be ignored any longer
- Waiting to repair our roads, bridges and underground infrastructure will cost much more than the $1.4 billion proposed. Pay now or pay much more later.
- Increases in revenue, under this package, will go directly to their intended purposes, fixing our state’s infrastructure.
If you need assistance contacting your lawmakers, whether it is finding which House and Senate districts you reside or developing further talking points, please do not hesitate to call MITA’s Outreach Coordinator Nicole Cook at (517) 347-8336, or email her at
email@example.com. If you have questions regarding the introduced bills, feel free to contact MITA’s Vice President of Government Affairs Lance Binoniemi at (517) 347-8338 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
As the legislation progresses, MITA will continue to update its members.