A transportation advocacy group that says it is dedicated to rebuilding Oklahoma’s transportation infrastructure has come out against the latest budget bailout plan introduced in the special session of the legislature.
TRUST which stands for Transportation Revenues Used Strictly for Transportation opposes HB 1019X which would reduce county highway and bridge funding by $80 million or 67 percent.
“Additional cuts, such as those proposed in HB 1019x will further devastate counties’ ability to maintain over 83,000 miles of county roadways and over 13,000 county bridges across Oklahoma,” said Neal McCaleb, president of TRUST. “While TRUST understands the legislature’s situation regarding the FY18 budget, balancing it on the back of our deficient transportation system is poor public policy.”
He went on to say transportation-generated revenues should not be diverted to non-transportation areas of government.
“The failure of the legislature to not approve a modest fuel excise tax increase, which TRUST supports, will result in negative impacts to both county and state transportation programs moving forward,” added McCaleb.
He said if the cuts take place, Oklahoma will fall further behind in its efforts to improve the transportation infrastructure system.