Texas House OKs resolution to pursue transportation-funding amendment

The Texas House of Representatives adopted a resolution over the weekend to dedicate billions of dollars to transportation funding, one day after the state Senate adopted the resolution’s conference committee report.

Senate Joint Resolution 5 calls for the creation of a constitutional amendment, which will be on the Nov. 3 ballot, that would allocate a specific amount of general sales tax revenue toward the State Highway Fund.

Approximately $2.5 billion each year would be donated from general sales tax revenue into the State Highway Fund. The bipartisan resolution would be implemented starting in 2018. Conservative estimates suggest this move could raise transportation funding by approximately $3 billion annually starting in 2020.

"SJR 5 will go a long way toward alleviating the continued shortfall in state highway funding,” State Rep. Ron Simmons (R-Dist. 65), who served on the conference committee for the resolution, said. “Both elected officials and the public have signaled transportation funding is a major concern, and SJR 5 will allow TxDOT to allocate more funds to alleviate congestion, repair bridges, and improve and maintain our infrastructure. SJR 5 also specifies that the additional funds may not be used for toll roads.

“SJR 5 would allocate more funding for much-needed transportation projects without raising taxes or fees,” Simmons said. “By capturing existing revenue, we can enhance our state’s transportation infrastructure without placing additional burdens on taxpayers.”

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