MEC COO Scott Waller speaks at an MEC news conference

Speaker of the House Philip Gunn looks on as MEC COO Scott Waller speaks at an MEC news conference yesterday explaining how the House plan for fixing Mississippi's crumbling roads and bridges will make a difference.

The Mississippi House of Representatives recently passed a road and bridge funding bill, allocating $150-$175 million per year for fixing roads and bridges beginning in July.

The House proposal outlines:

  • $50 million in bonds: $25 million to counties, and $25 million to cities for bridge repairs.
  • Allocating the use tax Mississippi is already receiving through voluntary payments on out-of-state purchases by Mississippi residents: 50% to MDOT if they internally reallocate $25 million in their existing budget to prioritize road and bridge repair, 25% to counties and 25% to cities for road and bridge improvements.
  • That if federal law changes, allowing for the collection of use tax from out-of-state sellers, Mississippi will spend up to $200 million of that money on road and bridge improvements.
  • When our state general fund revenue grows more than 2% in one year, 50% of those dollars beyond the 2% growth (up to a max of $100 million) will be devoted to road and bridge improvement under the same formula.

The bill passed with an overwhelming vote of 109-7.

This passage comes just after the Federal Highway Administration closed 57 bridges throughout the state after an audit of 114 local bridges.

MEC applauds the recognition of the importance of the need for fixing Mississippi's roads and bridges by the Governor, Lt. Governor and Speaker of the House and their commitment to making a difference.

MEC held a press conference after the House adjourned yesterday, praising the bill's passage and highlighting the support of state leaders. MEC COO Scott Waller, Mississippi Municipal League Executive Director Shari Veazey and Mississippi Association of Supervisors Executive Director Derrick Surrette spoke at the news conference praising the house action.