Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Mon/Fayette Expressway group calls for oil franchise tax hike

Had the state Legislature not "capped" the oil franchise tax years ago when gasoline was cheaper, the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation would have collected an extra $4.1 billion by now.

It would not have been necessary to pursue the controversial tolling of Interstate 80, attempt to sell the Pennsylvania Turnpike to private investors, raise turnpike tolls by 25 percent or borrow $2.5 billion to temporarily fund roads, bridges and transit — money that must be repaid over decades, plus interest.

In addition, Gov. Ed Rendell and the General Assembly would not be involved in their politically contentious special session in an election year, trying to find at least $450 million as a stopgap measure to avert a transportation funding crisis and another $1 billion to fully meet needs....
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