Road Commission offers free discussions on Prop. 1

By: Cari DeLamielleure-Scott | C&G Newspapers | Published March 2, 2015

 A worker of Tel-Twelve Towing Service Inc. changes a flat tire after the vehicle hit a pothole on Lahser Road in front of the Road Commission for Oakland County office last March.

A worker of Tel-Twelve Towing Service Inc. changes a flat tire after the vehicle hit a pothole on Lahser Road in front of the Road Commission for Oakland County office last March.

File photo by Cari DeLamielleure-Scott

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OAKLAND COUNTY —  Road Commission for Oakland County officials will give educational presentations about the upcoming May 5 ballot initiative that would increase the state’s sales tax and provide additional funding to fix roads throughout the state. 

The educational presentations will be free to any group or organization in Oakland County.

State legislators placed Proposition 1 on the ballot as a solution to the state’s road funding problems. The proposal would increase the state’s sales tax from 6 percent to 7 percent and eliminate sales taxes on fuel.

Craig Bryson, public information officer for the Road Commission, said this is a critical road funding initiative, and though the Road Commission does not advocate for or against Proposition 1, officials want to make sure people in the county understand “what the situation is that resulted in this proposition being out there.”

Educational discussions, which will include an explanation of the proposal’s impact on road funding, will be held until the May 5 election. Before people vote on Proposition 1, Bryson said, they should read about the proposal.

“We’re not allowed to advocate, and we do not intend to do that,” Bryson said. “Obviously, Michigan is in a road funding crisis. Our roads are deteriorating. Compared to other states, Michigan has been in the bottom nine states per capita for decades.”

The Legislature, Bryson said, has declared that the state is not investing enough money into the roads. After deliberating various solutions, including raising the gas tax, Proposition 1 was put on the ballot.

“One of the messages that we’d like to share is (that) whether you like this proposal or not, there is no plan B. If we want to fix the roads, this is the only option out there right now, and probably likely going to be the only option right now,” Bryson said.

Road Commission Managing Director Dennis Kolar said in a press release that the Road Commission welcomes the opportunity to meet with organizations throughout the county to educate them about Proposition 1.

“We will not advocate for or against the initiative, but we will explain what it is, how it would work and what will happen if it passes and if it does not pass,” Kolar said in a press release. “This is an important issue for Michigan and for Oakland County. So, we are making ourselves available anywhere and anytime there is a group that would like us to speak.”

To schedule a Proposition 1 discussion, contact Peggy Pentecost at (248) 645-2000, ext. 2252, or email her at ppentecost@rcoc.org.

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