MADISON (WLUK) -- Assembly Republican leaders have sent a letter to trucking related businesses and groups, asking for suggestions on how to pay for road repairs.
“Anybody that we're talking to is telling us not to do anymore borrowing unless we can find a way to pay for it and that's what we're trying to do,” said Assembly Majority Leader Jim Steineke, R-Kaukauna.
The state is $1 billion dollars short in its transportation fund, and that's a sticking point in passing the two-year budget, which is now five days overdue.
Republicans say a per mileage fee on heavy trucks could increase transportation revenue by $138 million a year.
However, that possibility appears to be dead. At least a handful of Senate Republicans side with trucking companies, who say they already pay their fair share.
“We pay the most into the transportation budget at 38 percent, with 10 percent of the miles driven on the highway systems in the state of Wisconsin,” said Neil Kedzie, president of the Wisconsin Motor Carriers Association, one of the groups the letter was sent to.
Kedzie says he has already sent budget suggestions to lawmakers. Kedzie recommends increasing the fuel tax and putting either a portion or all of the sales tax from auto parts toward the transportation fund.
“It's whether you're a hybrid, electric, large truck, passenger vehicle, you all need these services as far as automotive parts are concerned and/or services,” said Kedzie.
“I actually think those are all good ideas in the short term here, unfortunately on the gas tax end of things, the governor has promised a veto on that,” said Steineke.
Walker and Senate Republicans have said they believe a solution can be found without raising the gas tax.
Walker has said he is optimistic a new budget deal will be reached soon.
In their letter, Assembly Republicans ask any new suggestions be sent to them by next Monday, July 10th.