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HuTube: The Transportation Funding Quagmire

Governor Rick Perry admits the state needs more money to pay for new roads. But he doesn't agree with the Texas Senate Transportation Committee Chairman on how to pay for them.

U.S. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison and Gov. Rick Perry.

This morning's flashpoint in the race for the Republican nomination for governor?

Governor Rick Perry's comments in Dallas yesterday in which he said the state will need more money for roads. That sounds obvious, but how to pay for transportation infrastructure is part of an ongoing debate quagmire across the state.

"So hopefully when we come back in 2011, both the citizens and their elected officials will come to a stronger realization that we're going to have to expand our ability to raise some dollars to build the roads so that you don't have the strangulation in places along the 1-35 corridor," he said, as reported by The Dallas Morning News.

Incidentally, state Sen. John Carona, R-Dallas, the chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, said last week an increase in the state's gas taxes by ten cents a gallon may be necessary to help pay for roads.

“By 2012, there will be no money left at TxDOT to build new roads. We'll only have enough money to maintain what we presently have. That is mismanagement on the part of the Legislature, and a situation that has to be corrected before we adjourn the next legislative session,” Carona said last Friday.

While recognizing the problem, Perry doesn't support Carona's suggested method of solving it.

This is his response to the question during a press gaggle last Friday.

Of course, this transportation funding quagmire is fodder for campaign web videos. Team Kay released this web ad this morning to highlight the governor's contradictions.

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Transportation 2010 elections Griffin Perry Rick Perry Texas Department Of Transportation Texas Senate