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Stack Says Pennsylvanians Need Senate Transportation Bill

Says transit agencies, including SEPTA, will benefit under SB1

PHILADELPHIA, June 5, 2013 – Transit agencies across Pennsylvania, including SEPTA, will greatly benefit under the major transportation investment bill approved today by the state Senate, Sen. Mike Stack (D-Philadelphia) said.

Stack voted in favor of Senate Bill 1 even though he said he does not like the consumer fees associated with the measure.

“There is no perfect solution to this big problem,” Stack said. “This is a core function of government – building our roads, taking care of our infrastructure and our transit systems – and we have been lax in this area.”

Senate Bill 1 promises to increase Pennsylvania’s annual transportation investment by $2.5 billion through a shorter window for lifting the cap on the Oil Company Franchise Tax and the approval of fee increases for vehicle registration and drivers licenses.

If signed into law, SB 1 would change vehicle registrations last two years instead of one, and it would increase the fee from $36 to $104. A driver’s license would cost $50.50 instead of its current $29.50, and $100 surcharge would be added to traffic violations.

Overshadowing the fee structure, the senator said, is Pennsylvania’s critical challenge in finding a way to pay for long-overdue repairs, upgrades and construction.

“We have seen the effects of bridges collapsing. We see daily traffic backups costing millions – if not billions – in our economy,” he said.

Stack also said he likes what SB 1 would do for mass transit in Pennsylvania, especially SEPTA.

“Roughly 70 percent of Center City Philadelphia workers rely on transit daily,” he said. “Year after year, SEPTA provides efficient, quality and safe transportation every day. The commonwealth relies on these riders to help control budgetary issues as well as our environmental footprint.”

Also important to note, Stack said, is SB 1 will create 50,000 jobs across the state.

“In the building trades, for those who build roads, for people who are desperately sitting at home looking for a job we’re going to create those jobs and we’re going to turn this state around,” Stack said.

Posted on June 5, 2013 in Press Releases.