Poll says Nevadans support taxes for roads | NevadaAppeal.com

Poll says Nevadans support taxes for roads

A poll conducted last week shows 47 percent of Nevadans support raising taxes and fees to build and expand roads in the state.

The telephone poll interviewed 600 likely voters statewide and found that only 29 percent oppose raising money to relieve roadway congestion. The remaining 24 percent were undecided.

The poll conducted for the Nevada Highway Users Coalition showed that 64 percent of those contacted are aware the state faces a $3.8 billion shortfall over the next decade in funding to build and expand roads and highways.

Those contacted were asked whether they would support raising taxes and/or fees to provide an additional 25 cents a day for construction that could save them up to 20 minutes in rush hour traffic each day.

Support for raising more money was strongest in Clark County where 49 percent were in favor. It was weakest in the rural areas at 41 percent.

Lost time was identified as the biggest factor in their support by 31 percent of those surveyed with stress a close second at 29 percent.

“These poll results show that voters are aware of the immediate need for additional transportation funding and they are willing to pay for a better quality of life that includes less stress and time in traffic,” said Stan Goodin, chairman of the coalition.

He said there are two funding proposals before the Legislature including SB324 which would equal about 25 cents a day for each Nevada driver.

A blue ribbon task force spent a year developing recommendations on how to raise the needed funding and some of its recommendations are included in the legislation. Gov. Jim Gibbons, however, has said wants to find other ways to pay for the construction than raising fees and taxes. He has suggested alternatives including toll roads.

And the Assembly Transportation Committee headed by Kelvin Atkinson, D-Las Vegas, wants to tax heavy trucks crossing Nevada to pay for the work. Representatives of the trucking industry say those charges would effectively take their profit margin.

The NHUC Poll, conducted by Research 2000 has a margin of error of plus or minus 4 percent.

• Contact reporter Geoff Dornan at gdornan@nevadaappeal.com or 687-8750.