Gov. Mike DeWine says he's trying to convey his message to lawmakers that the state is in dire need of more money for construction projects, and that his 18-cent gas tax increase proposal is the way to generate those funds. But the House cut that proposal down to 10.7 cents and Republican Senate leaders say more changes are coming.
DeWine has said his original proposal, which would also be indexed to inflation so it could rise, is the bare minimum to maintain and repair roads and bridges.
“People think the roads are bad today, if we don’t step up and do what we need to do, these roads are gonna get even worse,” says DeWine.
He says this is a need based on facts. And he make it clear he doesn't think the House’s 10.7-cent increase, phased-in over two years with no index to inflation, is enough.
“We have to step up. And if we don’t, we’re just fooling the people of Ohio. The one thing I owe the people of Ohio is the truth and to be very, very candid with them. And the truth is, the House bill as passed doesn’t cut it,” DeWine says.
Some sources are speculating the Senate could come back with a gas tax increase of between 5-7 cents.