“In these tough economic times, local governments need to prioritize their spending the same way that Texas families and businesses are. This is not the time – and House Bill 300 is not the way – to create an even greater tax burden on Texas motorists, especially when the current state budget continues to divert well over $1 billion of our gas taxes to non-transportation purposes.

“Local governments already have considerable resources available to address this problem. Our research has shown that their spending has grown much faster than population growth and inflation, and that many communities have chosen to use the transportation penny of sales tax authority on other uses.

“If transportation is in such a crisis condition that the local governments claim it is, they should first put their available resources toward transportation. The evidence is clear that they are not. Our legislators should not let them off the hook for their unwillingness to set priorities.”

Justin Keener is Vice President of Policy and Communications for the Texas Public Policy Foundation.

The Texas Public Policy Foundation is a non-profit, free-market research institute based in Austin. More information can be found on the transportation research page of the Foundation’s website, www.TexasPolicy.com.

– 30 –