Saturday, April 27, 2019

Sanfelippo's Plan for Wisconsin Roads

Joe Sanfelippo has an intriguing plan for financing Wisconsin's roads--and it is NOT a gas-tax, nor a fee increase, nor a toll-road.  In other words, Sanfelippo thinks Wisconsinites pay plenty already, but the money's going to the wrong (and very, very fat) pot.

...The nonpartisan Legislative Fiscal Bureau estimates that Wisconsin collects around $1 billion in sales tax revenue annually from the sale of automobiles and related parts and services, all of which currently goes to the state’s general fund. Transferring a portion of this revenue into the transportation fund over time would give it a stable and sustainable funding source without putting a hole in the state budget and jeopardizing other programs. Critically, this would make money available to begin substantially reducing Wisconsin’s reliance on bonding for road construction projects. As a result, money that would otherwise be used for debt service would, instead, be available for additional transportation program funding. That’s a common-sense approach that Wisconsin should strive to achieve.

Any honest discussion of Wisconsin’s transportation issues has to acknowledge the role that the waste and inefficiency in the sprawling state Department of Transportation plays. Consequently, a central component of this plan is ensuring that the DOT continues to implement the operational reforms that commenced under the previous DOT secretary to begin addressing these structural problems within the agency. In tandem with dedicating more funds for transportation, we must pass legislation that reforms the way that the department conducts its business on a day-to-day basis and, also, properly aligns its long-term planning with its long-term needs....
Joe should be careful about crossing the RoadBuilders, or he'll find himself under the pavement like the last West Allis politician who took them on.

But hey!  Nice to see someone who thinks more of the taxpayers than the DOT's Permanent Class and the RoadBuilders, eh?

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