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PennDOT Officials Warn Not Passing Transportation Bill will Have Major Impacts

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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.

10 comments

  • leroy

    THE SCRANTON AREA … did those bridges EVER see preventative maintenance … hell.they can’t evev lay a smood patch… on the express way into the city .. cedar ave… why the barrels…just to create a bottle neck ???????? PENN DOT should be privatized !!!

    • Janet Den Haese Anderson

      Penndot needs better management not privatization! They are good paying and have good benefits. Sounds like you are anti union for all the wrong reasons. The employees are only as good as the management they get. Privatization would only mean less repair and more pocketing of profits by the upper level. Privatizing only hurts the little guy….

  • Janet Den Haese Anderson

    who is Jennifer Collins???? We use the roads so we should pay for repairs…..let’s see….how many private businesses and corporations use our roads to deliver their goods and make plenty in profit?? Shouldn’t they pay a majority of the repair bills seeing how their tonage trucks cause the most wear and tear on the roads. Why do we have to keep paying for these fat cats and the damage they do to the roads and bridges. Jennifer Collins whoever you are you need to open your eyes and SEE the BIG picture.

    • Tom T

      Janet,
      They do pay big bucks in taxes and fees. A registration for a truck, just
      the tractor in this state cost almost $3000.00. That`s just for a license
      plate. They pay the Fed Gov. 500.00 before they can even apply for the plate. Add to that the state and federal taxes on a 3 to 5 hundred dollar fuel fill up along with corporate federal and state taxes and tolls
      which are three times as much as a car pays and well, you get the picture. Real question remains, where dose it all go? I said it before
      I`ll say it again, if a business ran it`s finances the this state dose, it would be bankrupt now and by the way, as far as those out of state trucks that bring your stuff to Walmart and your food to the
      supermarket and oh yes, the gas for the car that you drive on the roads
      were talking about, they pay for every mile they drive in the state
      minus, of course, the tax they pay at the pump. In other words
      everybody is stretched pretty thin and paying their fair share and
      the state is still in the whole. You can only get so much milk out of the cow in one day. Just ask a farmer who depends on a truck to get
      his milk to the plant.

      • Janet Den Haese Anderson

        you sound like a “corporate” man, or one who deems to profit from our tax dollars. I still say let them pay for the road damage that they do to the roads.What they’re paying doesn’t even come close to the profits they make or the damage they create. The big rig drivers are a main cause of the damage and the accidents on the roads. Let’s face it if it wasn’t prosperous they wouldn’t be in the business, right? Enough said!!

      • Anonymous

        @Janet

        “…and the main cause of accidents on the road”

        Do you actually spend any time on the road at all? It’s all of the terrible drivers, and the texting drivers, and the combination in-between..but that’s neither here nor there. What we need are better road conditions, and I don’t particularly care how that happens. A couple cents a gallon is not going to break the bank.

  • John C Miklos

    While we’re having this discussion, we should press politicians and bureaucrats to secure funding for the maintenance of public infrastructure. Gas taxes nationwide only cover ~20% of road maintenance costs in this country, the rest is drawn from income taxes. As the years roll on and more people turn to means other than privately-owned petroleum-powered vehicles for transportation, this problem will only get worse. It’s about time we, as a people, come to recognize the true cost of our choices.

  • Ron

    In the early 60’s when I was learning to drive, I remember they added a 5 cent tax to gas so they could fix the highways. Now some worthless politician wants to do it again? Where did all the money go over the last 50 years? It “never” goes were intended.

    • Tom T

      Excellent point Ron. We paid for these highways a long time ago. If businesses managed or ran the way politicians and bureaucratic
      politically appointed hacks do, they would have been bankrupt a
      long time ago. Public transportation is another cash cow that`s
      been mismanaged while budget after budget they come back to the
      public trough for more of our money, Tolls have gone up, gas taxes have gone up and the roads keep getting worse. There for some
      time Penna. was ranked as having some of the worst roads in the Country. The money we send to Washington never gets fully
      returned and they do an even better job of borrowing from and
      moving money around that was supposed to be spent on highways.
      Where dose it all end and when dose the working people who
      pay for all this get accountability and something to show for what
      they pay? This has all been going on for a long time, for too long.

  • Brian

    Okay So Not Passing A Transportation Bill Will Be Bad For Those People That Drive The Highways.What About The People That Depend On Public Transportation To Get Where They Need To Go.Every Bit Of Money Goes To The Highways.They Are Bad I Must Admit,But Public Transit Needs Help To Keep Costs Down For Those That Need To Get Around.Many People Can Not Afford To Buy & Maintain A Vehicle.

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