Estes votes for increase in transportation funding

Immediate_Release(073013)

Senate Passes Senate Joint Resolution 1 and Senate Bill 1

Senator Estes supports both to increase transportation funding while protecting the Rainy Day Fund

Austin
– Beginning the Third Called Session, Senator Estes voted in favor of a legislative package that will increase transportation funding and ensure a healthy balance in the Economic Stabilization Fund, known as the Rainy Day Fund.

On his vote Estes said, “This is a commonsense conservative approach. It increases transportation funding to ease traffic congestion without a tax increase or adding to our debt.”

Senate Joint Resolution 1 provides that 50 percent of oil and gas severance tax revenues currently allocated to the Economic Stabilization Fund be allocated to the State Highway Fund for the construction and maintenance of roads. If approved by the voters, it is estimated to increase transportation funding by $878 million in fiscal year 2015, while leaving a balance of more than $7 billion in the Rainy Day Fund. Transfers to the State Highway Fund as a result of SJR 1 cannot be used to finance toll roads, or to pay for old or new transportation-related debt.

Senate Bill 1 requires a safe balance be set for the Economic Stabilization Fund and prohibits the allocation of oil and gas severance tax revenues to the State Highway Fund until this balance has been reached. Additionally, the bill stops the allocation of oil and gas severance tax revenue to the State Highway Fund if a safe balance is
not set.

Explaining further Estes said, “It is absolutely critical to the future of Texas that we find additional funds for transportation. Over the last decade our great state has experienced tremendous population and economic growth, and our infrastructure needs to keep pace in order for the next ten years to be as prosperous as the last
ten.”

Estes serves nearly 820,000 constituents across Senate District 30 which includes all of Archer, Clay, Cooke, Erath, Grayson, Jack, Montague, Palo Pinto, Parker, Wichita, Wise, and Young counties and parts of Collin and Denton counties.

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Liz White

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