Chesterton Tribune



House OKs Soliday bill for gas and cigarette tax hikes for roads

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The Indiana House of Representatives voted in favor of State Rep. Ed Soliday’s (R-Valparaiso) bill to provide funding to maintain and improve Indiana’s roads and bridges.

The bill passed on a 62-35 floor vote Tuesday.

House Speaker Brian Bosma has backed the bill, which Gov. Mike Pence and conservative groups criticize for raising Indiana’s taxes. Under the bill, the cigarette tax would increase by $1 per pack and the 18-cent-per-gallon gas tax would go up by 4 cents.

Soliday said the state’s stationary gas tax is losing ground to inflation, and generating less revenue due to improved fuel efficiency. This bill calls for the gas tax, which has not been increased in more than 10 years, to be indexed to reflect the change in buying power from 2002 to today.

House Bill 1001 also calls for the state income tax to be cut by 5 percent over eight years.

The bill now moves to the Senate, which also has its own plan backed by Pence that would earmark part of the state’s surplus for road improvements as a short-term solution to the state’s crumbling infrastructure.

Rep. Soliday represents the city of Valparaiso, all of Center, Union and Washington townships and portions of Liberty and Jackson townships.



Posted 2/3/2016




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