So Proposition D isn't really about increasing funding for road and bridges but slush fund for more priority areas as long as the project is listed on the 2014 state freight plan list that “impacts the distribution of goods and on-time delivery of freight”.
Being retired, I am quite picky about raising any kind of taxes I was a bit leery about the proposed gas tax increase. However, our state roads and bridges could use improvement, so why not. The slick TV ads look like it should be a good deal since the money goes to road improvement, right? Not so fast.
I looked up the legislation behind Proposition D. House Bill 1460, Section A. (1) talks about the tax increase stuff then “the state portion of the revenue generated by the increases in the rate of tax beginning July 1, 2019, shall be used for the actual cost of the state highway patrol in administering and enforcing any state motor vehicle laws and traffic regulations” What? Wait. I thought it was supposed to be for roads and bridges. Hmmm. Really?
Then six pages later it says, “There is hereby created in the state treasury the "Emergency State Freight Bottleneck Fund", which shall consist of moneys appropriated by the general assembly. So what does it pay for? “Projects eligible for financing under this section shall: (1) Be a major road improvement with an estimated construction cost of fifty 15million dollars or more; (2) Be an improvement needed to eliminate a bottleneck, a twenty minute delay or more during peak hours, that impacts the distribution of goods and on-time delivery of freight; (3) Be an improvement needed to reduce fatal and disabling motor vehicle crashes within an area designated as a safe travel zone by the department of transportation; (4) Be an improvement listed on the 2014 state freight plan; and (5) Be slated to receive not less than thirty-five percent of the funds required for project completion from sources other than the state road fund or general revenue.” Read the part about where the money can only go toward very carefully. The Travel Safe Zones are only those areas posted as such with yellow signage.
So Proposition D isn’t really about increasing funding for road and bridges but slush fund for more priority areas as long as the project is listed on the 2014 state freight plan list that “impacts the distribution of goods and on-time delivery of freight”.
It lastly states that the Missouri state law enforcement will gain at least $288 million annually and $123 million annually for road construction.
Tacky Missouri Legislature. Very tacky. Talk about a bait and switch.