Alison Goebel, Executive Director of Greater Ohio Policy Center, spoke on the needs for comprehensive transportation funding to Karen Kasler on the public affairs show, “The State of Ohio,” last week. The interview concerned GOPC’s efforts to have funding for functional and innovative public transportation to be included in discussions for the State Transportation Budget.
Dialogues regarding road and bridge funding often turn to the economic impacts of the state transportation network, citing it as a job-creating tool that provides for the safe and efficient movement of goods and people. Another integral component of the relationship between transportation and economic development is the state public transportation network, which connects employers to workers and individuals to essential services. In order to meet market demand for 21st century transportation options, Ohio must prioritize and diversify its transportation network to better connect and assist Ohioans in accessing basic and vital services. Last fall, GOPC released Fueling Innovation in Transit: Potential Funding Options for Public Transit, recommending three sources which would generate $123 million in new state funding for Ohio’s public transit agencies.
Governor Mike DeWine has assembled a 15-member committee to quickly determine options to address impending state funding reductions for transportation projects. The work of this committee will delay the introduction of the State Transportation Budget, originally scheduled to be introduced this week. The committee has two weeks to propose solutions to a major funding shortage, including discussion of the state gas tax rates, the primary funding mechanism for transportation projects in Ohio.
As it stands now, the funding shortage threatens the status of major construction and maintenance projects across the state, with the potential to idle at least 20 priority projects. The state transportation budget provides funding for major new road projects and maintenance for Ohio’s networks of roads and highways.
To watch the entire interview, please visit: http://www.ohiochannel.org/video/the-state-of-ohio-2-1-2019-sherrod-brown-hits-the-road-gov-addresses-drug-issues-state-road-projects-short-on-money?start=1131&end=1605