GEOFF PENDER: Lawmakers are talking about talking about road funding

In a column about this time last year, I predicted funding for road and bridge maintenance would be a huge issue for lawmakers in their upcoming legislative session. And the same in a column the year before that. And the year before that, and the year before that.

But to quote myself from 2012: “There’s no will for taxes. Given the current climate, a tax increase proposal stands about the same chance as a snowball at the Neshoba County Fair.”

Has that changed? I don’t know. It certainly hadn’t last session.

State business leaders last year mounted a fairly robust lobbying effort for lawmakers to come up with more money on road maintenance. They didn’t endorse a specific plan but did offer a “menu” of taxes and fees that could be raised.

It was a non-starter. A newly minted House Republican supermajority from the 2015 elections wouldn’t touch it. Hard to blame them.

Clarion Ledger
9/3/16