Illinois governor signs $45B state construction bill
In a move that reportedly transcended politics, Illinois Gov. J.B. Pritzker on Friday signed into law a bipartisan plan that will sink $45 billion into state construction projects and construction-related programs.
The Rebuild Illinois plan, which will be paid for primarily by increases in gas and cigarette taxes, as well as the revenue generated by a significant expansion of state gambling laws, is made up of four pieces of legislation, the first of which (House Bill 62) identifies the projects that will receive funding. Those include:
- $33.2 billion of transportation projects including new roads and bridges, surface transportation rehabilitation, mass transit, passenger rail and ports
- $3.5 billion for education projects, which includes deferred maintenance and new projects at both public and private universities, as well as maintenance and other projects at the pre-K-12 level
- $4.4 billion to renovate or build new state facilities
- $1 billion for environmental and conservation projects
- $420 million for an expansion of broadband
- $465 million toward healthcare and human services projects
- $1.8 billion for projects and programs that spur economic development like museums and libraries, as well as apprenticeships and minority-owned business initiatives
New taxes that went into effect today will help pay for the massive program over the next six years. One raises the motor fuel tax from 19 cents to 38 cents, while another provision allows for a five-cent increase in the special fuels tax on diesel fuel, liquefied natural gas and propane to 7.5 cents.
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