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Lawmakers Unveil Rail & Road Plan

Senator John Carona of Dallas

By Shelley Kofler, KERA News

Dallas, TX – Under legislation filed in Austin today, North Texas voters could be asked to approve new taxes and fees for building roads and commuter rail.

A large group of local and state lawmakers gathered to endorse the measure as a way to relieve congestion and air pollution. State Senator John Carona of Dallas is the bill's author. Carona says it would put local transportation in the hands of local voters.

Carona: The bill doesn't raise a single penny of tax or raise a single fee on its face. Doesn't force anybody to do anything

The bill will let the voters decide what kind of transportation system they want and how much they are willing to pay for it.

The legislation would provide North Texas a way to pay for a 215 mile rail network that would connect the region. Among the possible fees are an increase in the motor fuels tax; an increase in the vehicle registration fee; and a fee for new Texas residents to register their vehicles in Texas.

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