(KCPW News) Utah Governor Gary Herbert is standing firm in his decision to veto SB 229, a bill that sets aside a portion of future sales tax growth to fund transportation projects. He says even though lawmakers plan to override his veto in a special session next Friday, the bill is bad policy and unwise.
“Transportation, where we’re going from about 15 percent of our sales tax revenue to now nearly 25 percent, earmarking nearly one out of every four dollars, potentially jeopardizing other priorities, particularly education funding, it ought to be looked at,” he said Thursday.
The bill is capped at 17 percent of total sales tax revenue, however. And legislative leaders have suggested that without SB 229, the gas tax would have to be raised in order to fund new road construction and road maintenance.
But Herbert made it clear he doesn’t want that, either.
“There was in fact a proposal in the legislature this session for a gasoline tax increase. I would have vetoed that. Our fragile economy right now I think would not warrant a gasoline tax increase,” said the governor. “It’s not about a gas tax. I believe that’s a red herring.”
Herbert said there’s a myth that the bill creates more revenue, when it fact it doesn’t. He spoke at his monthly news conference on KUED yesterday.
How do you feel about this topic?
Is there anything else you think we should know? We'd like to hear your thoughts. Send us your feedback using the form below.