A state Senate committee will likely vote tonight on a bill that would put a transportation funding constitutional amendment before voters this fall, dedicating all of the sales tax on auto parts and repair to roads and bridges. Abbey Bryduck with Associated General Contractors of Minnesota supports it and acknowledges the alternative — a gas tax increase — is a tough sell. Bryduck says, “The reality is in the past 30 years, we’ve had two gas tax increases. In 1988, we added three cents and in 2008 we added eight-and-a-half cents. …It’s become pretty politically difficult to pass it.”
Opponents warn that diverting tax revenue now going into the General Fund will hurt other programs. Backers say the amendment would make 250 million dollars available per year for roads and bridges, the equivalent of nearly a nine-cent increase in the gasoline tax.