road repairs

Andrew Cluley

State Legislature getting ready to hammer out compromise on road funding

The state Legislature is taking steps to hammer out a road funding compromise in the final days of its 2014 session.

The House and Senate passed plans that are drastically different. The Senate approved legislation that would essentially double the state's gas tax to pay for road improvements. The House plan would divert revenues from schools and local governments and would not raise any taxes.

wikimedia commons

Gov. Snyder urges state House to pass gas tax increase for roads

State lawmakers have just nine or ten more session days in 2014, and still no consensus on how to raise money to help fix Michigan's roads.

With the Legislature's "lame duck" session about to start up in earnest on Tuesday, Gov. Rick Snyder spent Monday promoting a specific road funding plan at events in Detroit and Southfield.

Washtenaw County Forms Roads Funding Committee

Jun 6, 2014
eWashtenaw.org

The Washtenaw County Board of Commissioners has created a Roads Funding Committee to study the county's options for paying for road repairs.

The county Board of Commissioners had earlier rejected a point-four-mil tax for road repairs.  This week's vote to create the Roads Funding Committee was just short of unanimous.  Commissioner Conan Smith voted "no".

Andrew Cluley

The idea of raising the tax on gasoline to help pay for road repairs in Michigan is drawing mixed reviews locally.

WEMU news caught up with Billy Starr walking along Huron Street in downtown Ypsilanti.  He says gas is taxed plenty already.

"I think it's way too high," Starr says. He worries people won't be able to afford to drive.

Others say they'd be willing to pay a little more for gas if it'll help repair Michigan's crumbling roads. 

Ypsilanti Residents Glad Road Repairs Are Coming

Apr 16, 2014
Bob Eccles

People who live and work along Prospect Road in Ypsilanti are glad to hear the city has approved spending some money to patch up the road and improve driving conditions until the road is completely re-built next year.

Jim Mufarreh owns Prospect Party Store at Prospect and Forest.

"Long time coming," Mufarreh says. "It's well-needed. It's terrible out there. It's a terrible road. It's been needed for years."

Mark Naess lives in the area, and he says the road is almost undriveable.

Ypsilanti City Council tonight is expected to consider a resolution to spend $249,000 to fix some of the city's worst roads. 

Council member Ricky Jefferson says the city has already had to pay on a couple of claims of bent wheel rims, and the problem is only going to get worse if it's not addressed.

The resolution up for council's consideration would target four specific sections of city streets:

Wikipedia

Governor Rick Snyder tells The Associated Press a proposal by Republican House leaders to spend $500 million annually on roads is a good first step toward much-needed changes, but says it's less than half of his spending target.

senatorarlanmeekhof.com/

    A top Republican in the state Senate thinks a long-term fix for Michigan’s roads could be coming sooner than expected. 

A stretch of Eastbound I-94 on the southern edge of Ann Arbor is going to be closed this weekend. As WEMU's Andrew Cluley reports, it is the first of several planned closures of the highway in coming months.