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Public Transit Wants Voice On Committee Considering Gas Tax Hike, Other Ideas

A COTA circulator bus passes in front of the Statehouse.
Karen Kasler
/
A COTA circulator bus passes in front of the Statehouse.

The 15-member committee that will make recommendations on how to fix the lack of funding for major road construction will meet soon.  But there’s one group of advocates who feel they’ve been left out of the process.

Gov. Mike DeWine’s Advisory Committee on Transportation Infrastructure will weigh options such as increasing the gas tax and tacking a fee onto electric vehicles. It includes members representing the oil and gas industry, local government, automakers and drivers.

But Alison Goebel with the Greater Ohio Policy Center said something’s missing.

“No one is actually there speaking on behalf of public transportation, and that seems like a major oversight," Goebel said.

Greater Ohio does research on economic development and growth in urban and rural areas.

Goebel said taxing surface parking lots, parking garages and out-of-state car buyers could net tens of millions that could go to public transit. And she said that investment could mean less repairing of existing roads and fewer new roads built.

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