SC House committee to explore road funding ideas

Published: Nov. 18, 2014 at 5:53 PM EST|Updated: Nov. 28, 2014 at 5:53 PM EST
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Associated Press

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) - The chairman of the House committee crafting that chamber's proposal for funding road and bridge work in South Carolina suggests relying on the sales tax instead of the gas tax.

Its chairman, Rep. Gary Simrill of Rock Hill, says the state first needs to turn thousands of state-maintained miles over to local governments. South Carolina's state highway system is the nation's fourth-largest, largely due to the vast number of short, secondary roads.

County officials have long opposed taking over such costs. But Simrill insists a compromise is possible.

After the system's reformed, Simrill suggests asking voters in 2016 whether a penny should be added to the state sales tax to fund roadwork. He says another idea is eliminating the gas tax and replacing it with the state sales tax.

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