State Has Been Playing Games With Gas Tax Money For Years

Posted in Road Issues at 11:17 am by wcnews

Here’s the article, St. Jude of politics is readying for fight over highway money (tip to Sal).

Many readers are probably aware that Wentworth files a bill every two years to create an independent redistricting commission that would take the power to redraw political lines away from state lawmakers.

Wentworth has credibility on the issue because, as a Republican, he continues to propose the bill at a time when his own party controls the levers in Austin.

But, while the idea makes sense, asking Democrats and Republicans to give up the right to exact gerrymandered revenge on each other is like asking a hungry dog to stop eating halfway through an opened box of Milk-Bones.

Despite similar long odds, frustrated motorists everywhere will likely honk for hope once they hear about Wentworth’s latest cause, a bill that would keep lawmakers from spending state highway funds on anything but highway construction and maintenance.

You might be asking: Do grown-up legislators actually need to be told that highway funds should go for highways?


Since 1986, about $9.3 billion has been diverted from the state highway fund for non-highway things such as tourism packages and state historical and arts commissions.

The Department of Public Safety, which patrols the state’s often traffic-choked highways, also is funded through highway dollars.

Our state government has been taking our transportation money and using it to pay for things other than transportation for many years. All the while they’ve been telling us we don’t have money to pay for roads the old fashioned way and forcing toll roads on us. When caught doing this the Speaker had this excuse:

“If the Legislature chooses not to utilize (gas tax) revenue for non-transportation infrastructure needs, then the Legislature would be forced to either cut other programs or raise revenue via increased taxes or increased fees,” Craddick wrote

That only makes sense. So in order to make these tax increases, otherwise known as tolls on our roads, seem acceptable they had to make it look like the gas tax was insufficient to fund highways. And the only way they could think to do that was to take that money and spend it on something else. Brilliant! How is this legal?!

There’s just so much corruption involved with these toll roads. I swear I’ll post on another topic soon.

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