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Republican Lawmakers Looking At 'Any Option' To Pay For Michigan's Roads Instead Of A Fuel Tax

Roads
Doug Kerr
/
flickr.com

A new idea to raise money to fix the state’s roads involves selling state assets to pay for the infrastructure.  As Cheyna Roth reports, the assets include the Blue Water Bridge.

A spending bill in the state House includes a requirement that the Department of Transportation put together a proposal for the potential sale of multiple assets.  The assets include a railroad line, eight welcome centers, the Blue Water Bridge, and four airports. 

Republican Representative Shane Hernandez is chair of the House committee in charge of the state budget.  He says this is just one option to explore.

“I think it’s appropriate for us to find out, is there interest, what is the value of our assets and we can’t make decisions going forward if we don’t know those things.”

Opponents say GOP lawmakers don’t even know if it’s possible to sell a bridge that the state owns with Canada.  Or how much money some of these assets are making for the state.

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—Cheyna Roth is a reporter for the Michigan Public Radio network.  Contact WEMU News at 734.487.3363 or email us at studio@wemu.org

Before becoming the newest Capitol reporter for the Michigan Public Radio Network, Cheyna Roth was an attorney. She spent her days fighting it out in court as an assistant prosecuting attorney for Ionia County. Eventually, Cheyna took her investigative and interview skills and moved on to journalism. She got her masters at Michigan State University and was a documentary filmmaker, podcaster, and freelance writer before finding her home with NPR. Very soon after joining MPRN, Cheyna started covering the 2016 presidential election, chasing after Donald Trump, Hillary Clinton, and all their surrogates as they duked it out for Michigan. Cheyna also focuses on the Legislature and criminal justice issues for MPRN. Cheyna is obsessively curious, a passionate storyteller, and an occasional backpacker. Follow her on Twitter at @Cheyna_R
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