Yesterday, the Ohio Senate passed the state’s two-year transportation budget, House Bill 62. Senator Sandra Williams (D-Cleveland) released the following statement:
“The Ohio Senate and the Ohio House of Representatives have agreed on sweeping changes to Ohio’s transportation bill. In a historic move, the chambers increased public transportation funding to a historic $70 million each fiscal year, which will allow for an influx of transportation dollars to return to our local communities. Additionally, the bill contains an increase in Ohio gasoline and diesel tax, which will be used to repair Ohio’s roads and bridges. Ohioans deserve to drive without fear of threats to their safety and damages to their vehicles due to poor road conditions. House Bill 62 will also allocate $500 million more dollars annually to the state transportation system to further continuous transportation projects that seek to tackle future road and construction issues. Unfortunately, HB 62 includes language that reduces local government funds to municipalities that utilize red light cameras, which will ultimately cripple the efforts of those entities to make up shortfalls from already reduced local government funds.”
HB 62 includes $70 million per year for public transportation, a 10.5-cent increase in the gas tax and a 19-cent increase in the diesel fuel tax as well as an increase in the state’s Earned Income Tax Credit (EITC) for low- and moderate-income Ohioans. Additionally, the bill eliminates Ohio’s front license plate requirement.