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Our Opinion: Have a say in the future of Missouri’s transportation

Our Opinion: Have a say in the future of Missouri’s transportation

October 4th, 2018 in Opinion

If you have a stake in the future of transportation in Missouri — and, frankly, we all do — set your calendars for Tuesday.

The Missouri Department of Transportation’s Central District will host a meeting 12:30-3 p.m. to discuss the current condition of the state transportation system.

The meeting will be at McClung Park Indoor Pavilion, at 931 McClung Park Drive in Jefferson City.

According to a MoDOT news release, the meeting also will discuss how MoDOT currently spends its resources to take care of transportation assets that would cost an estimated $125 billion to replace, and how additional funding resulting from Proposition D could be used best to consider regional priorities — if voters approve the measure in November.

The meeting will be among those that will lay the groundwork for the development of the next Statewide Transportation Improvement program that will set MoDOT’s construction commitments for 2020-24, and will be presented in draft form to the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission in May.

“We expect these to be robust conversations about road and bridge priorities and how we can all work together to incorporate potential new resources into our plan of action for the future of transportation in Missouri,” MoDOT Director Patrick McKenna said, in the news release.

Part of the future of transportation will be determined by your input at meetings such as this. However, a big part will be determined by the outcome of Proposition D, the November statewide vote that would hike fuel taxes.

If approved, Missouri’s current 17-cents-per-gallon motor fuel tax would be increased by 10 cents over the next four years. It also would raise taxes on alternative fuels such as natural gas and propane.

Granted, Tuesday’s meeting is being held by MoDOT, which is not an unbiased source of information on the issue. The agency wants you to pass its fuel tax.

Should you vote “yes” on the issue? If you don’t know, this meeting could be the start of your research that will culminate when you cast your ballot in less than five weeks.

Our newspaper, on this and other election issues, will continue to be a source of information on the issue, leading up to the Nov. 6 election.

News Tribune