GOP lawmaker wants to use sales tax to pay for Idaho roads

GOP lawmaker wants to use sales tax to pay for Idaho roads

GOP lawmaker wants to use sales tax to pay for Idaho roads

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by Associated Press

KTVB.COM

Posted on February 10, 2014 at 3:41 PM

Updated Monday, Feb 10 at 3:41 PM

BOISE -- A Republican lawmaker proposes digging into Idaho's sales tax revenue to fund highway and bridge projects.

Rep. Joe Palmer, House Transportation Committee chairman, pitched the idea Monday.

Typically, Idaho pays for roads from fees assessed on gas or vehicle registrations.

Palmer's measure would depart that tradition, but only after Idaho's revenue reaches certain thresholds.

Once general fund income hits $2.91 billion and education funding exceeds $1.4 billion -- both pre-recession records -- he'd begin taking a slice of the growing sales tax for roads.

The bill was introduced, with Nampa Rep. Brandon Hixon lauding it as an "outside of the box" solution.

Moscow Democratic Rep. Shirley Ringo was wary.

She'll oppose tapping into general fund dollars until Idaho develops a better track record of adequately supporting public and higher education.

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