Governor Rendell continues to push hard for action on transportation funding before he leaves office in January, but it increasingly appears to be a lost cause.
KYW’s Tony Romeo reports the refusal of federal officials to approve tolls for I-80 created a nearly half-billion dollar annual hole in the state’s plan to fund roads, bridges, and mass transit.
Governor Rendell has previously suggested a menu of options to raise new money for transportation and on Monday he’ll give a more specific proposal. But the governor also has only a few months left in his tenure, and Erik Arneson, the spokesman for Chester Republican Dominic Pileggi, the Senate majority leader, says the legislature has many other important issues to tackle – including a tax on natural gas extraction – besides transportation:
“And this is one of the most difficult and contentious, so, the safer bet is that this will not get done in the fall.”
Arneson also contends there is a growing sense in the legislature that transportation funding is an issue that the new governor should have a chance to weigh in on.