Up to $3B in transportation debt possible in legislation

June 5, 2018

RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) — North Carolina Republican legislative leaders support a proposal from Democratic Gov. Roy Cooper’s administration to maintain the increased pace of road construction by authorizing debt, paid back using projected highway-building revenues.

Both the Senate Finance Committee and House Transportation Committee debated and voted Tuesday for similar measures to allow up to $3 billion in what’s called “special indebtedness” through 2028. The debt could be issued without a referendum.

The N.C. Department of Transportation wants road spending kept at current levels after cash balances dwindle. Debt would be repaid from a trust fund that receives gasoline and vehicle sales taxes and Division of Motor Vehicles fees.

The bills passed after Republican members got assurances state borrowing would remain within self-imposed debt limits and projects on the transportation blueprint would be built.

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