Oregon House sends road plan to Senate

| Wednesday, June 25, 2003

The Oregon House has approved a multibillion-dollar plan to fix the state’s roads and bridges.

House lawmakers voted 48-11 June 23 to send HB2041 to the Senate for consideration.

The transportation finance plan raises $2.5 billion over 10 years, mostly from bonds repaid from higher vehicle registration and title fees, higher permit and license fees on drivers and higher weight-mile taxes on truckers, Oregon House Speaker Karen Minnis said in a statement.

About $1.6 billion would go toward repairing or replacing 480 bridges on the state’s major highways. The rest of the money would go to cities, counties and the state for road projects.

Car title fees would increase from $30 to $55 starting Jan. 1. Registration fees would go from $30 to $54 every two years. Commercial truck registration fees would increase about 53 percent, and their weight-mile taxes would climb almost 10 percent.

Other features include a provision that would give truckers as much as $3 million a year in tax credits for buying cleaner engines, The Oregonian reported. The credits would be funded from a transportation reinvestment pot filled by personal income taxes from jobs created by bridge work.

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