Protesters target bill to divert general revenue to highways

LITTLE ROCK (Arkansas News Bureau) Advocates of family and children's services, along with representatives of a number of the state's colleges and universities, voiced opposition Wednesday to a proposal they say would divert about $2.3 billion in state general revenue to state highways over the next decade.

House Bill 1418 by Rep. Jonathan Barnett, R-Siloam Springs, would divert sales tax revenue generated by the sale of new and used cars, auto parts and services to the state Highway and Transportation Department.

The revenue shift would occur in increments over a 10-year period and eventually amount to about $450 million annually for the highway department, Barnett said Wednesday. He said he hopes to present the bill next week in the House Public Transportation Committee.

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