Governor To Propose Phased-In 45¢ Hike In Gas Taxes To Fix Roads

Governor Whitmer’s budget proposal will include a 45¢ per gallon increase in gas taxes, enacted in three phases. Her office is confirming that part of the proposal, which follows a plan floated by a bipartisan group of former Legislative leaders including former Republican Senate Majority Leader Ken Sikkema and former Democratic Lieutenant Governor John Cherry. Whitmer has been saying she wants those who use the roads to pay for them.

“Even the Senate Majority Leader acknowledged that the state of our infrastructure crisis is going to require additional resources,” said Whitmer Monday.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey said last month that yes, he would be on board with a possible tax increase for the roads, but only after all other options had been exhausted.

The Michigan Department of Transportation says even with additional money put into roads in the last several years, they are still considerably underfunded. Some experts say the state needs to sink at least $2 billion every year into roads to rebuild and maintain the state’s infrastructure and get the system back to being in adequate shape. Tuesday’s budget proposal is also expected to include a $507 million increase in money for schools, the biggest jump in 18 years. It would amount to $180 more per student.