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County Expecting 60% More Gas Tax Money From State

Ralph Weisheit
McLean County Roads have $25-30 million in deffered road maintenance.

McLean County government is expecting the busy spring legislative session in Springfield to help it chip away at road repairs and other infrastructure.

County government will receive a 60% increase in state motor fuel tax funds next year, or an additional $1.2 million. That's because the state's gas tax will double, to 38 cents per gallon.

County Engineer Jerry Stokes said the tax will not fix everything, but it will help.

“So it’ll allow us to probably resurface four miles of road and increase our maintenance on some of the minor oil chip roads,” said Stokes.

The power of the previous gas tax has been eroding over the past 10 years, according to Stokes. McLean County currently has $25 million to $30 million in deferred road maintenance.

"It’ll help us catch up on some of the issues we’ve been putting off over the past five to 10 years,” said Stokes.

The City of Bloomington is also expecting more money from the state's motor fuel tax increase. The city is expecting an extra $900,000 annually for state-approved projects, once the tax increase is fully implemented.

Capital Bill

Meanwhile, the state's new capital bill—its first since 2009—will also send McLean County more money to improve infrastructure.

But Stokes said the county doesn't know how it will allocate those funds, because it's unclear how much of the $45 billion plan will go to each county, city, and town.

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