Politics

PennDOT Secretary talks about funding plan, local projects

PennDOT Secretary talks about funding plan, local projects

Transportation funding is another key part of the budget process.

Governor Tom Corbett's transportation secretary says widening Route 22 in Lehigh County is one of several local projects that would move forward under Corbett's transportation funding plan.

PennDOT chief Barry Schoch spoke Thursday in Whitehall Township.

He says the key to Corbett's plan is user fees.

"What we're looking at is increasing registration and license fees -- that's what the Senate proposal does," said Schoch. "The governor's proposal is to uncap the oil company franchise tax.. which will be reflected in what you pay at the pump, and uh, in essence.. the more you drive, the more you use the system, the more you pay for it."

The state Senate's transportation plan is more expensive than Corbett's proposal.

Schoch says he and Corbett are open to negotiations.

But time is ticking.

Schoch says less funding will force PennDOT to tackle fewer projects and restrict more bridges by weight.

Pennsylvania has about 25,000 bridges with an average age of 51-years-old.


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