DENVER (KDVR) — A plan costing more than $5 billion to get Colorado”s infrastructure on track is headed to Gov. Jared Polis’ desk.
The bill passed along party lines in the House with those against the measure warning it will cost consumers too much in the long run.
Lawmakers who support the multi-billion-dollar transportation plan said the benefits will reach all four corners of the state.
“We’re making investments for everybody. We’re looking across the state and saying, ‘We can hang together, or we can hang apart.’ And I’m so proud of it,” said bill sponsor Rep. Matt Gray, D-Boulder-Broomfield.
For opponents, the price it deals to consumers is not a fair tradeoff.
“I call it the gas tax fee, charge assessment. It’s almost as if what we’re doing is taking the general structure of what we’ve done to fund transportation, and then we just decided to add a fee to everything,” said House Minority Leader Hugh McKean, R-Larimer.
Fees will not be added to everything, but they will be tacked on to quite a few things we use in our everyday lives.
If you drive green, you can expect your $50 vehicle registration fee to increase as adjusted to the national highway inflation.
Having your food or online orders delivered? That’s going to cost more too — 27 cents per delivery, to be exact.
Starting in 2022, a 2-cent gas tax will take effect and increase a penny per gallon every year until the tax reaches 8 cents.
Uber and Lyft prices — already skyrocketing — will get higher, too. A fee of up to 30 cents per trip would also go into effect next year.
While Polis has said the plan with $3.8 billion worth of fees will end up saving Coloradans time in the long run, Republican leaders worry about the short-term impact of coughing up more cash.
“It’s our job to fight against some of the things that really negatively affect the people of Colorado: increased taxes, increased regulation, a lot of things that have virtually no effect here (at the Capitol) or feel good here but put that stress on a family, who’s sitting across a kitchen table going, ‘How are we going to pay these bills?'” McKean said.
Though the vote was divided in the House, it received bipartisan support and opposition in the Senate.