BLOOMSBURG — Lawmakers in Harrisburg are continuing to debate a transportation bill that some considered a long-awaited bill.
Right now weight restrictions are in place on more than 1,600 bridges in our region to try and keep the roads safe for drivers.
PennDOT officials said if a bill doesn’t pass soon, roads will only get worse as roads continue to deteriorate.
“Next year you’ll see another 250 weight restricted bridges. You’ll also see an immediate shutdown of about seven transit lines between Philadelphia and Pittsburgh, which could be 50,000 riders a month back on the street in vehicles or perhaps not have a mode of transportation,” said Barry Schoch, Secretary of Pennsylvania Transportation.
Some lawmakers are proposing raising taxes for gasoline to help offset the funding costs.
Jennifer Collins of Glen Lyon said she wouldn’t be opposed to paying more in taxes to make sure major roadways get fixed.
“If you can’t find the money anywhere elsewhere, where are you going to get it from? I say, we use the roads everyday, don’t we? It makes sense if we pay for what we use,” Collins said.
Other drivers we spoke with said no way to shelling out more cash.
“I’m all against raising taxes. I think we pay enough taxes. I think the tax money they’re already taxing us, maybe they ought to spend it more wisely,” said Brad Evans of Bloomsburg.
Local lawmakers said there is no time constraint on passing the bill.
After this Friday lawmakers will be on recess for the Thanksgiving holiday.
The next voting session after that is between Dec. 9th – Dec. 15th.
PennDOT officials hope a bill is passed as soon as possible.