JEFFERSON CITY - Transportation funding proponents want Missouri shoppers to pay an additional cent in their sales taxes for 10 years in an effort to fund what supporters say are desperately needed transportation improvements.
Rudolph Farber, Chair of the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission, called for more transportation funding Thursday during a conference at the Capital Plaza Hotel that would come from a temporary 10-year tax increase estimated to generate $7.9 billion. Ten percent of that revenue would be used for local transportation needs in cities and counties.
The transportation commission proposal began by stating additional funding was necessary since staff had already been reduced by 1,200 people and 131 facilities were closed in an effort to save money but stated the cuts don't solve long term transportation problems.
The tax is expected to stimulate Missouri's economy according to the proposal. Missouri Department of Transportation Director Kevin Keith spoke on the matter earlier Thursday in support of a Senate bill.
Keith told senators that an updated interstate is an important piece of the state's economic strategy to compete with surrounding states.
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