Iowa is aiming to raise an additional $200 million a year for road projects, and lawmakers are currently studying a plan that would assist in the efforts by increasing the gasoline tax.
The plan, suggested by the Associated General Contractors of Iowa, a road construction industry group, would implement a 4-cents-per-gallon increase in gasoline taxes, plus higher fees for pickup trucks.
A joint House-Senate committee will submit the plan to their caucuses and to Gov. Chet Culver for comment.
"There will be a mixed response from our caucus," predicted West Des Moines Republican Sen. Pat Ward. "A number of our members believe that even though this is a significant fee and tax increase, roads and bridges are very important. Then there are others who will be opposed to any tax and fee increases, period."
Altoona Democrat and committee co-chairwoman Rep. Geri Huser said she would rather not see the gasoline tax raised. She supports finding other sources of revenue for road and bridge projects.
"I do not believe at this point in time that Iowans want to see gasoline taxes go any higher," Huser said.