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8:56 am
Tue March 19, 2013

O'Malley Transportation Tax Measure Inches Forward in Annapolis

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ANNAPOLIS, Md. (AP) - A House panel has approved Gov. Martin O'Malley's proposal to raise new revenue for transportation projects with some changes when various increases will take effect.

The House Ways and Means Committee voted 15-4 on Monday for the bill.

It's estimated the measure will raise roughly the same amount of money as O'Malley's initial proposal, but it is being phased in more gradually in the opening years.

Supporters say Maryland hasn't raised the state's 23.5-cents-per-gallon-gas tax since 1992. They say Maryland needs to keep its transportation system competitive with neighboring Virginia, which approved a transportation revenue package this year.

Opponents say the state has mismanaged transportation money in recent years to fill other budget holes. Now, opponents say, lawmakers want to make residents pay more to make up for it.