Snyder’s plan steers state in right direction

If you were to list some of Michigan’s best attributes, the quality of the roads would not be one of them.

However, Gov. Rick Snyder is backing a new legislative plan that might give all Michigan drivers a smoother ride.

In May, voters will be able to decide the fate of a $1.2 billion road funding package strongly supported by Snyder. The plan calls for passing new legislation to remove the current 19-cent a gallon gasoline tax Michigan motorists pay at the pump and imposing a sales tax on the wholesale level. An additional tax on vehicle registration fees also is under consideration.

Editorial Board

Andrew Krietz
Katie Harringtonr
Greg Olsen
Derek Blalock
Omari Sankofa II
RuAnne Walworth

The second option for voters would involve a two percent increase to the state’s current six percent sales tax.

Snyder’s determination in addressing the deterioration of Michigan’s roads has been criticized by some, but these proposed changes are welcomed and seem overdue.

The crumbling state of Michigan’s roads has been a problem each of us has observed for far too long.

In his third State of the State address on Jan. 16, Snyder urged state legislators to focus their attention on additional road funding to protect Michigan’s infrastructure investment. Snyder also said that passing the road funding package is a simple way to help taxpayers avoid paying far more for bigger repairs in the future.

On a day-to-day basis, avoiding hazards, such as pot holes and cracks, has become a routine part of Michigan residents’ commutes that does not exist in other states.

Throughout time, these elements can cause damage to our vehicles, as well as serve as a safety hazard that easily could be avoided.

Although certain issues, such as funding toward higher education, are self-evident problems in the state, improving the condition of the roads is an issue that can’t be put off any longer.

Increasing taxes always is going to be a topic that generates complaints from citizens, but when the extra money is being allocated to support basic necessities, the new charge shouldn’t be looked at as a bad thing.

From a business perspective, improving the conditions of the roads is something that might improve the transportation of goods and services across the state.

On a personal level, Michigan residents who drive more frequently than others should see this increased tax as a measure they owe to the state.

Snyder has acknowledged how arduous the May vote will be; this either-or proposal seems like something that will stand out as a significant moment in Michigan’s history.

In 1994, Michigan voters were faced with a similar difficult decision, when increasing sales taxes were proposed as a way to help fund Proposal A, which called for a more stabilized funding of Michigan schools. That proposal was heavily criticized, but once it was approved by voters, it has since served as a positive decision for Michigan residents.

Although the outcome of May’s election is unknown, one thing can be agreed: The condition of Michigan’s roads is something that should be addressed sooner rather than later, and this proposal is a good way to steer our state into the future.

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