Linda P. asks: "Since the road funding proposal was voted down, what is the next step towards a solution?"
Answer: One of the main issues still to solve is that not all of the money you pay at the pump goes to roads under the current tax system. This can be difficult to fix without changing the Constitution, but is important because about one third of the taxes collected on traditional fuel does not end up contributing to transportation related repairs. Importantly, alternative fuels such as Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) for commercial trucks and electric cars are not taxed for roads at all. The recent town halls in Branch, Hillsdale, and Jackson Counties were a large part of the effort to raise awareness of the fuel-to-taxation connection, and to give voters the best information available about funding our roads. The next step, which has already begun, is for legislators to draft new legislation that leads to permanent, ongoing funding. A large package of new bills is expected to be voted out of the House in the near future, and efforts are also underway in the Senate.