Governor Mike Pence says ‘the time has come’ for his plan to invest $1 billion to maintain state roads and bridges. Pence’s “21st Century Crossroads Plan would be funded from sources including state reserves, existing sales taxes and bond refinancing and much of it needs legislative approval. Critics, including Indiana House Democratic Leader Scott Pelath, have called the plan "sheepish" and “the bare minimum to address a serious problem.” In an interview to air this weekend on Inside INdiana Business Television, Pence said his plan continues a decade of significant infrastructure investment in the state.
We want you to join the conversation. Is the governor’s billion-dollar plan the answer for Hoosier roads and bridges, or does it fall short? Tweet your responses using the hashtag #IIBTV, and see other responses by clicking here.
"It’s a free country and people are entitled to their own opinions," says Pence, "but they are not entitled to their own facts, and the fact is Hoosiers can be very proud of the investment made in infrastructure over the past decade."
The debate came to the forefront in August, when the northbound lanes of I-65 between Lebanon and Lafayette were closed after concerns about the stability of the Wildcat Creek bridge.
The 21st Century Crossroads Plan would be funded from sources including existing sales tax, bond refinancing and more than $240 million from state reserves. The state says it closed Fiscal Year 2015 with a structural surplus of $210 million and total reserves of more than $2.1 billion.
In a statement released shortly after today’s announcement, Pelath said, "Indiana deserves more practical vision than what we got today. This is kicking loose change under the couch."
Pence also weighed in on the economy and what he is hearing from business leaders on issues including RFRA. Click here for show times.