JEFFERSON CITY – The members of the Missouri House Policy Development Caucus will spend the next several weeks touring the state to seek public input on the funding problems plaguing the state’s transportation system. State Rep. Jeff Messenger, who serves as chairman of the group, said the goal is to talk to Missourians from all walks of life to get their thoughts on how the state should generate much-needed revenue for its roads and bridges.
“We know this is a crisis situation with the thousands of miles of roads and hundreds of bridges we have that are falling into disrepair with no viable funding plan to ensure their long term viability,” said Messenger, R-Republic. “This is an issue that everyone has talked about but for some reason continues to go unresolved. Our goal as a caucus is to go directly to the people to hear from them on what they think will work as a reasonable, cost effective solution.”
Messenger said the Policy Development Caucus, which was formed by House Speaker Todd Richardson last year to develop and fine tune the policy goals of the Missouri House Republican Caucus, has spent the last several months analyzing Missouri’s transportation funding needs and possible funding solutions. The caucus now hopes to present its findings to Missourians in all parts of the state and to receive their input on solutions they think are feasible.
“We have worked as a caucus to thoroughly look at this issue, and to consider possible funding mechanisms to infuse our transportation system with needed dollars. MoDOT currently has $825 million in high-priority unfunded transportation needs. It is vital for us to receive input from Missouri citizens on how to address those needs,” said Messenger.
The caucus is presenting eight possible funding options for Missourians to consider at these meetings. Messenger added, “We invite folks to come out, share their creative ideas, and make their voices heard on an issue that directly impacts their daily lives.”
The House Policy Development Caucus plans to hold its first public meeting in Maryville on Tuesday, July 25. It will follow up with a meeting later in the day on July 25 in Lee’s Summit. From there the caucus will hold meetings on the following dates and locations:
- August 1 – Kirksville
- August 1 – Boonville
- August 22 – Sikeston
- August 23 – St. Charles
- September 6 – Springfield
- September 7 – Waynesville
The caucus will wrap up its work on September 13 with a final meeting in Jefferson City where it will present its findings.