Thank you, sir!
Rest assured - I won't be running for office anytime soon. That said, I do intend to write my state representative, state senator, house leadership and senate leadership to share my ideas.
What I think will ultimately happen, legislatively, is this:
- House and Senate leadership will make the error of addressing road funding prior to addressing auto insurance reform.
- The Republicans will probably propose a road funding plan that consists of two parts: (i) a $0.10 - $0.15 per gallon fuel tax increase and/or an increase in vehicle registration fees, and (ii) additional funding tied to voters approving an increase in the general sales tax.
- Because households will not yet have received the benefit of auto insurance rate relief, they will be tax weary and likely vote down any ballot proposal seeking to increase the sales tax.
I know Speaker of the House, Lee Chatfield, wants all taxes collected at the pump to go toward roads. Right now, in the current 2018/2019 budget year, $356 million of general fund revenue goes toward roads.
Under the November 2015 law, I believe the mandatory number increases to $800 million by 2021. If fuel prices average $3.00 per gallon, that $800 million will be roughly equal to 80% of the general sales tax revenue collected at the pump (i.e. 80% of $1.0 billion). So, Chatfield essentially wants to increase the $356 million number to $1.0 billion, which would leave a ~$654 million hole in the general fund. I simply don't see how slashing general fund spending by $654 million is viable. I think there is where (ii) from the previous paragraph comes into play.