Local News

Gas tax increase proposal approved

Recommendation would generate $479M a year

MADISON, Wis. - It would cost more to register a vehicle, get a driver's license and buy gas in Wisconsin under a series of recommendations unanimously approved by a group studying ways to shore up transportation funding in the state.

The recommendations would generate about $479 million a year over the next 10 years, according to information released Wednesday by the Transportation Finance and Policy Commission.

Transportation Finance and Policy Commission member John Antaramian of Kenosha said Wednesday it will be an uphill battle to get the recommendations approved. But he said lawmakers and Walker must look at the needs of the state and the importance available to address them.

"Once the report is out and people actually take a look at what we are suggesting, is it an uphill fight? Absolutely. But people who should be looking at this in the Legislature need to look at it on the basis of economic development and the ability of people to get to where they need to go," Antaramian said.

Many of the group's ideas have already been rejected by Gov. Scott Walker.

The commission said the impact on the average driver would be $120 a year.

Antaramian said he has faith policy makers will deal with the issue.

Walker has said improving the state's infrastructure is one of his priorities, but he is opposed to raising the gas tax. He will outline his plan in his state budget to be released next month.

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