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Oregon House passes $5.3b transportation bill

by Andrea Waitrovich

The Oregon House of Representatives passed a $5.3 billion, 10-year transportation package Wednesday, by a vote of 39 to 20.

According to a release from the Office of the Oregon Senate President, the plan will modernize and improve Oregon’s transportation infrastructure by addressing five of the priorities heard most consistently around the state: Reducing congestion, increasing alternate transportation options, investing in maintenance and preservation, improving safety of existing infrastructure, and ensuring accountability in how taxpayer dollars are spent.

The package now will be presented to the Senate.

House Bill 2017A will increase safety for pedestrians, bicyclists and drivers; invest in more affordable transportation options for working families; and ensure that Oregon’s signature clean air protection, the Clean Fuels Standard, continues to reduce pollution.

The10-year plan includes hikes in the gas tax, registration and title fees, and new taxes on payroll, new vehicle purchases and bicycles priced more than $200.

The Oregon Transportation Commission is responsible for establishing the program, which could toll certain lanes on Interstate 5 and Interstate 205 to help pay for congestion-busting projects.

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