State Representative Kyle Koehler (R-Springfield) applauded the passage of Substitute House Bill 53 out of the Ohio House of Representatives this week.
Sub. HB 53 is the state transportation budget, which allocates vital funding to improve Ohio’s infrastructure and economy. It provides more than $3.4 billion annually over the next two years for making improvements to the state’s transportation infrastructure and safety services. Over the biennium, the bill appropriates $5.04 billion for highway construction and maintenance.
"One of the main responsibilities that state government has when it comes to tax dollars is providing for roads, bridges, and public safety,” Koehler said. “Tuesday, the Ohio House passed the Transportation and Public Safety Budget for 2016 and 2017 with a 97-0 vote. I am proud to be part of an Ohio House that is being led by Speaker Rosenberger in such a way as to allow Republicans and Democrats to work together for the people of Ohio."
Among other provisions, Sub. H.B. 53:
- Appropriates $450,000 per year for the Department of Public Safety to purchase driving simulators
- Strengthens standards for Ohio’s driver-training schools and instructors
- Requires deputy registrars to accept payment in the form of credit or debit cards by July 1, 2016, and prohibits any additional charges for a financial transaction device from being added to the total cost
- Increases the project threshold for which a county engineer can utilize design-build from $1.5 million to $5 million
- Provides an additional $114 million over two years for local transportation projects
Prior to clearing the House floor, HB 53 passed out of the Finance Committee unanimously. It will now head to the Ohio Senate for further consideration. By law, the transportation budget must be signed into law by March 31st.