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Vehle To Hold Hearings On Highway Funding Needs

Vehle To Hold Hearings On Highway Funding Needs

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) — A South Dakota senator who has long urged additional funding for state highways says he plans to take a measured approach in his next attempt to boost the state taxes that support road construction and maintenance.

Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Mike Vehle of Mitchell says he will hold a series of hearings when the 2014 legislative session opens in January to gather information about the need for highway funding. He says if a consensus can be reached, a bill to raise highway taxes could be introduced in 2015.

The state’s 22-cent-a-gallon motor fuel tax and the 3 percent excise tax on vehicle sales were last raised in 1999.

Any effort to boost road taxes might be tough to get past Governor Dennis Daugaard, who has consistently opposed tax increases.

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