Important: Transportation Funding Plan Introduced in PA Legislature — Needs Support
A crucial piece of legislation was introduced in the PA legislature yesterday. Special Session House Bill 8 is a comprehensive transportation funding plan that, if passed, would raise $1.3 billion for transportation in Pennsylvania. I was on a conference call today led by House Appropriations Chairman Dwight Evans.
HB8 has three main components:
1. 8 key reforms aimed at public transit agencies
2. P3 language, specifically on the make-up of the P3 Board that I touched on in yesterday’s post
3. Revenue proposal with three parts:
- An 8 percent tax on the gross profits of oil companies in lieu of the Corporate Net Income Tax
- A 52 mill (or 6.5 cents) per gallon increase in the Oil Company Franchise Tax (paid at the wholesale level
- An increase in fees, some of which haven’t been raised since 1977.
During the call, Chairman Evans stressed that the need to take action is now, as the first few months of 2011 will be a transition time for the General Assembly (with new elected officials just being sworn into office). Rep. Evans also stated that prompt action is needed since the PennDOT bidding process takes approximately 5 months and not moving on a funding package would mean that 38,000 jobs could be lost and the risk to public safety would continue increasing.
Rep. Evans is planning to have the bill come out of committee by the end of the month and have it on the House floor by the start of October. Given the urgency of this issue, we are urging all advocates and supporters to contact their PA House Representatives and let them know that you support Special Session House Bil 8.
For additional background on this bill, I am attaching:
- Transportation Special Session House Bill 8 Summary
- Transportation Public-Private Partnership (P3) Summary
Need to know how to contact your House Rep? Our contact sheet should help you out with that: Contact Info for Lehigh Valley Legislators.