Wednesday, November 17, 2010

The Impact of repealing Colorado’s vehicle registration surcharge

Concerns were raised on a legislative panel this week at the Capitol over whether the state would be able to meet its financial obligations for bridge-repair projects should the funding source–a surcharge on vehicle registration fees–be repealed by lawmakers.

The surcharge, authorized under 2009 legislation dubbed FASTER, so far has paid for upgrades to two of 77 bridges that will be funded through the Statewide Bridge Enterprise Bonding Authority. The remaining projects will be paid off by the surcharge through bonds scheduled to be issued beginning in December.

However, Joint Budget Committee staffers warned the committee Monday during an overview of the Department of Transportation fiscal structure that recent calls by some GOP lawmakers to repeal FASTER could result in a financial obligation to the bonds that may have to come out of the state’s cash-strapped operating budget if the fees are no longer collected.

“If they (the enterprise board) proceed with bonding, and the General Assembly repeals FASTER and repeals the bridge-safety surcharge, then you all have a problem,” said JBC staffer Craig Harper.    More

1 comment:

  1. So, just don't tie taxes to debt obligations. This is the way that the government ties our hands to projects, needed or not, to ensure that we don't overturn the taxes, excuse me fees, that they pass. No problem here JBC staffer Craig Harper, the enterprise board should not proceed with the bonding. We can make this a ballot initiative going forward! Let's see - at no time shall any board or committee of the State of Colorado pledge any revenue, tax of fee stream to a specific debt offering. Yes, I like the sound of that one.