House panel approves shifting car sales tax to DOT

February 19, 2013 

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) – The House budget-writing committee has advanced a bill shifting money collected from the state sales tax on cars to road and bridge repair.

The measure sent to the floor Tuesday would eventually transfer more than $80 million yearly from the general fund to the Department of Transportation. The transfer would be phased in over two years, meaning $41 million would go toward fixing roads in the coming year.

The money comes from the state sales tax on vehicles, which is capped at $300.

Orangeburg Rep. Gilda Cobb-Hunter voted against the idea, saying she wants money for infrastructure, but not by taking money from other needs.

The transportation department says it needs an additional $1.5 billion over the next 20 years just to bring roads into good condition.

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