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Lawmakers: Transportation stalemate possible

Posted at 6:49 PM, Feb 29, 2016
and last updated 2016-02-29 18:49:56-05

INDIANAPOLIS -- Lawmakers say it's still not out of the question that they might wrap up the general session without a plan for infrastructure funding.

Two very different plans are advancing through the legislature – one from Republicans in the house, the other from Republicans in the Senate.

The plans vary in dollar amount, length of time and sources of money for the roadwork.

House Republicans continue to push forward with a plan that relies on increases in taxes on gas and cigarettes. That idea isn't something their colleagues in the Senate, or Democrats in either chamber, will go for.

Senate republicans are moving forward with a plan that includes a one-time, $430 million transfer for local roads and uses about the same amount from excess reserves for state highways.

House Speaker Brian Bosma was sharply critical of that plan last week.

"Every year of delay exacerbates the problem, and it's not just by a year," Bosma said. "Roads are in less repair in that year period. Bridges are in worse condition in that year period, and it's very difficult to make up that time."

Negotiations will likely take place in a conference committee. Both Bosma and Senate President David Long remain hopeful lawmakers can find common ground.

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