The pavement is crumbling, and there's just not enough money to do anything about it.
"It's a little bit of doom and gloom here," said Anderson, the
For a state ranking 12th in the country in miles of roads and fifth for bridges, it's some pretty bad news. Anderson said the revenue simply isn't there to support the infrastructure.
"We really have an infrastructure burden. It's a large system, but it's an important system," he said.
"Obviously, this situation isn't going to get any better," he said. "It's not like the bridges and roads will fix themselves in the off time if we wait another year."
It's a measure fully supported by the members of the
"Unfortunately, the fuel tax is a political issue," said Byrnes, who is chairman of the
Through the 1980s and 1990s, road revenue steadily increased by 3 percent to 4 percent every year, thanks to more travel and more expensive vehicles. Growth peaked in 2004, however, and travel is down 1.3 percent from then.
"At the federal level, over 90 percent of federal funding for roadways comes from a federal fuel tax," Anderson said. "It's led to a lot of uncertainty in knowing how much federal money we're going to have from year to year. If
Anderson said the lack of money has hampered the widening of critical highways like
"We do not have the ability to add any more corridor segments," he said.
"No one is taking this as seriously as we need to in the legislative body," Byrnes said. "Raising a tax is never popular, and people don't like to hear that."
That includes members of Byrnes' own party.
Byrnes finds that kind of attitude incredibly frustrating.
"We cannot sit here every five or 10 years and have this argument over the gas tax," he said. "We just continue to let things go backwards."
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