Rob Moritz with our content partner, the Arkansas News Bureau, does the early leg work on a story about next year’s proposed, 10-year, half-cent sales tax increase for a state roads program.

The legislature referred a proposed constitutional amendment to voters for the 2012 general election that will allow them to decide the fate of the roads project. State highway officials estimate that the half penny could raise up to $1.8 billion for a four-lane highway expansion.

Earlier this year, voters approved a renewal of a highway bond program by an 81-19% margin. In 2012, roads supporters expect tougher terrain.

From Moritz’s report:

Move Arkansas Forward spokesman Craig Douglass said next year’s highway funding vote “will be a different campaign.”

Douglass said the key in promoting the half-cent sales tax will be educating various regions of the state on what kind of highway projects they could expect, and reminding them how much money cities and counties would receive.

“Rather than a statewide effort, I would suspect that the (Move Arkansas Forward) committee will regionalize the campaign based on projects,” he said. “They also will need to stress that it is a temporary sales tax for specific projects.”

You can read more of Moritz’s report at this link, including comments from leaders with the Arkansas State Chamber of Commerce, Arkansas Municipal League, and Arkansas County Judges Association.

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