Road repairs – and salt for the winter – are largely unfunded around Illinois, because the state has not released to local governments their share of the motor fuel tax. The problem extends past transportation, the Johnson County engineer told members of the Illinois House. “Since learning of stopping the payments,” said Steve Kelley, “I've had to lay off two highway employees, and then, this week, we end up having our secretary go to halftime.”
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While the House majority leader said this bill should be easy to support, seeing as how it does not use money from the general revenue fund, the Republican floor leader said something is missing. “The mechanics of this matter,” said State Rep. Ron Sandack (R-Downers Grove). “What IDOT is supposed to do and how they go about their business matters, and a good, prudent practice would have been to engage the department,” which was not represented at Tuesday's hearing. The bill requires a final vote in the House, and that could come Sept. 2. HB 4149 A1 has passed the House, 58-0-16.