State's Mayors Discuss Local Funding of Roads

Posted January 10, 2008

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— Funding road construction was among the topics that the state's mayors discussed Thursday, the second day of a two-day conference of the North Carolina Metropolitan Coalition.

Because of a projected $65 billion shortfall over the next 25 years within the state Department of Transportation, the cost to maintain state roads could soon fall to local leaders, leaving them to raise the funds to make repairs and improvements on roads in their municipalities.

"The problem is: Where does the money come from?" Chapel Hill Mayor Kevin Foy said.

Without help from the state, one way to raise funding on a local level is through higher property taxes.

"If it's pushed down to the cities in the current (funding) state, then it's the property tax that's impacted," Winston-Salem Mayor Allen Joines said.

Foy and other mayors at the conference say that's unfair.

"There's got to be a way to fund it, and the way you fund it is not to say to the cities, 'You figure it out,'" Foy said.

Some cities, such as Raleigh, have already seen a rise in property taxes. Mayor Charles Meeker said property taxes in the Capital City went up several years ago to maintain state roads.

"If we have to tack on the cost of roads, they're going to get significantly higher," Foy said.

The state has struggled to meet the demands for road funding because of limited funds, rising construction costs and unprecedented growth.

Last month, county commissioners met in Raleigh to discuss funding roads on a county level.

They talked about potentially having to increase property taxes, too.


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  • Jay4 Jan 11, 2008

    Why does this "reporter's story" not include some important FACTOIDS such as that TaxEasley and his cohorts (Jim Black) and other notorious criminals in the NC Legislature have found ways to WASTE OUR HARD EARNED TAX DOLLARS that were supposed to go to the Highway Trust Fund yet were spent on OTHER items deemed more important than our roads! NC was once the good roads state. Now it is the bad roads state and getting worse by the DAY!!!

    We need a governor and legislature who will STOP paying off their highest contributors with STate jobs and Projects using our TAX DOLLARS that should be used paving our roads!!!

    And local governments can stop wasting multiplied millions of taxpayer dollars paying for "green space" instead of paving the roads of its hardworking, taxpaying citizens and businesses who use these roads by the tens of thousands every single day.

    SHAME ON YOU WRAL - for not presenting all the facts here.
    You are adding to the shame and disgrace our roads have become.

  • wayne1961 Jan 11, 2008


    Here is the article verifying my statement concering flat gas tax revenues that you disagreed with:

    This is quoted straight from the article

    "State traffic counts and road building costs are increasing steadily, but improved fuel economy has reduced gas sales in recent years -- keeping tax collections flat. State leaders are looking for new ways to catch up with road and transit needs."

    What is your suggestion to fund this transportation crisis? Doing more with less will only go so far when you are TWO BILLION per year behind on road construction.

    According to

    DOT awarded $726 Million in Construction in 2006. 2 BILLION more is needed. How do you squeese 2 BILLION worth of efficiency out of $726 Million?

    It can't be done. More revenue is needed or more gridlock.

  • nerdlywehunt Jan 11, 2008

    Anything is better than DOT. They are completely clueless. Additional gas tax or toll roads is the only fair way to pay for these projects. That assures that the people that use the resource pay for it

  • lacockrell Jan 11, 2008

    You forgot about Funeral tax and estate tax......and the list goes on...

  • 68_polara Jan 11, 2008

    Vehicle Sales Tax
    Vehicle License Registration Tax
    Recreational Vehicle Tax
    Trailer registration tax
    Road Toll Booth Taxes
    Toll Bridge Taxes
    Toll Tunnel Taxes Watercraft registration Tax

    Gasoline Tax

    Road Usage Taxes (Truckers)

    Dog License Tax Fishing License Tax Hunting License Tax Cigarette Tax

    "Not one of these taxes existed 100 years ago and our nation was the most prosperous in the world, had absolutely no national debt, had the largest middle class in the world, and Mom stayed home to raise the kids. What happened?"

    It just goes to show that there are many government officials at the federal, state, and local level that are hard at work figuring out how to increase your tax burden.

  • 68_polara Jan 11, 2008


    Federal Income Tax
    Federal Unemployment Tax
    Workers Compensation Tax
    Social Security Tax
    Medicare Tax
    State Income Tax
    State Unemployment Tax School Tax

    Sales Taxes (State and Local)

    Real Estate Tax Property Tax Building Permit Tax Well Permit Tax Septic Permit Tax Utility Taxes Severence Tax

    Corporate Income Tax Accounts Receivable Tax Privilege Tax Inventory Tax Food License Tax Fuel permit tax

    Inheritance Tax Interest Expense Capital Gains Tax IRS Penalties IRS Interest Charges

    Liquor Tax Luxury Taxes

    Marriage License Tax Service Charge Taxes

    Telephone federal excise tax Telephone federal universal service fee tax Telephone federal, state and local surcharge taxes Telephone minimum usage surcharge tax Telephone recurring and non-recurring charges tax Telephone state and local tax Telephone usage charge tax

  • Leonardo Jan 11, 2008

    whatelseisnew -

    What are you proposing? Transportation funding in this state comes from gas taxes and vehicle registration fees. If those are insufficient (because building roads gets more expensive over time, yet we cap gas taxes), where is the money going to come from? Should we start shifting money from the general fund (which comes from income taxes)? Or do you simply think that the DOT can do more with what they currently get (perhaps this is true, but I have yet to hear any actual evidence of this)?

    I'm sorry, but I strongly believe that funding for roads should be entirely paid for by gas taxes. It's the most fair solution. If the gas tax revenue isn't sufficient to pay for our needs, then either those needs will have to be trimmed (i.e. scrap the rest of the outer loop), or we'll need to raise gas taxes. Complain all you want about your other taxes, but those taxes have nothing to do with road construction.

  • whatelseisnew Jan 11, 2008

    Why is it people always want to hit the other guy for money. Toll roads will just be another tax and give the state the ability to squander more money, and they will still tell you they are short for building roads. They have enough money. We need to make them spend it correctly.

  • whatelseisnew Jan 11, 2008


    I do not buy the fact that revenues are flat because of more efficient vehicles. For one thing, all the gas hog vehicles that have sold over the last few years are still out there, second we have had a huge influx of people and that means there are more vehicles on the road. Third the gas tax has increased year over year. So I can not buy that gas tax receipts are not higher.

  • jeffthompson Jan 11, 2008

    It is time for TOLL roads. And locals always can learn ways around the TOLL roads. If they put a Toll plaza on I-77 in Charlotte at the NC/SC state line coming into NC (Charlotte) they would make a fortune from SC people using our roads to get to work, make their money, and then they take it back to SC. They should have to pay some kinda commute tax or toll.