Republican Senate leaders released their version of the transportation budget bill, making dozens of changes to what the House passed in HB62, however the gas tax increase went untouched. Sen. Rob McColley (R-Napoleon) says it's very likely that will change.
The House passed a 10.7-cent increase to the gas tax over the next two years. That means a driver would pay 38.7 cents a gallon in state tax when they fill up their tank.
“The only issue is, we have not had a chance in the limited time that we’ve had to really develop our final version of that tax package. So the House version of the sub bill is left unchanged, but nobody interpret that as the Senate accepting the House package. We are likely to change it,” says McColley.
Gov. Mike DeWine says the state needs an 18-cent gas tax hike in order to generate the amount of money the state needs in infrastructure construction costs.
The Senate also left unchanged $100 million to public transportation. However, there is talk that that is also likely to be reduced.
The Senate Transportation Committee is expected to make their changes to the gas tax increase through an amendment that could be introduced later this week.