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Fuel Tax Changes Recommended To Help INDOT Funding Needs

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Chrysler Group
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The Indiana Department of Transportation is in the middle of a comprehensive two-year study to determine its future infrastructure funding needs. 

But Chamber of Commerce CEO Kevin Brinegar says there are some changes the legislature can make right away that will help move the state in the right direction.

He says that includes some sort of assessment on alternative-fuel vehicles, whose drivers don’t pay as much in fuel taxes as most people.

“Like North Carolina does – North Carolina imposes a $50 fee on hybrid vehicles and a $100 fee on electric vehicles for the privilege of using the roads and to pay their fair share for the damage done,” Brinegar said.

Brinegar says the state should also link gas tax increases to inflation.

Speaker Brian Bosma says he wishes the legislature had done that 15 years ago when his caucus proposed the idea.

“The gas tax is difficult,” Bosma said. “It’s a difficult animal to deal with because gas prices remain high, even though we had this little anti-spike here in the last week. So we have to find a solution on that.”

Bosma says lawmakers will also consider diverting more money from the sales tax on gasoline directly to road funding.

Brandon Smith is excited to be working for public radio in Indiana. He has previously worked in public radio as a reporter and anchor in mid-Missouri for KBIA Radio out of Columbia. Prior to that, he worked for WSPY Radio in Plano, Illinois as a show host, reporter, producer and anchor. His first job in radio was in another state capitol, in Jefferson City, Missouri, as a reporter for three radio stations around Missouri. Brandon graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia with a Bachelor of Journalism in 2010, with minors in political science and history. He was born and raised in Chicago.