Alderman Wants To Boost Gas Taxes To Fix Potholes
A freshman Alderman wants to boost Chicago gas taxes to help the city fill potholes.
Ald. Gilbert Villegas (36) says you don’t need to be a rocket scientist to know potholes are a problem in Chicago, and he says his time at the Illinois Department of Transportation taught him a few things about how best to fix them.
“Often times, the state or any government is good at building things, but they’re horrible at maintaining things and so in order to maintain things you need revenue, a revenue stream and you need to make sure it’s dedicated specifically to that item,” he said.
Right now, the city collects five cents for every gallon of gas sold in Chicago. Villegas wants to increase that levy to 12 cents, and use that extra money solely to make infrastructure improvements.
The alderman said he realizes no one likes to get taxed. In fact, he didn’t vote for the new garbage collection fee or property tax hike, but he says the state isn’t providing enough money to fix Chicago’s roads.
Mayor Rahm Emanuel told reporters last week he supports investments in infrastructure but hasn’t seen the alderman’s proposal yet.
Lauren Chooljian covers city politics for WBEZ. Follow her @laurenchooljian