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Government & Politics

Public Transit Officials Complain About Being Left Out of Funding Committee

A photo of Central Ohio Transit Authority bus in the Short North district of Columbus.
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Public transportation advocates say they feel left out of the conversation about transit funding.

The 15-member committee that will make recommendations on how to fix the lack of funding for major road construction will meet soon.  There's one group of advocates who feel they’ve been left out of the process.

Gov. Mike DeWine’s Advisory Committee on Transportation Infrastructure will weigh options such as increasing the gas tax and tacking a fee onto electric vehicles. It includes members representing the oil and gas industry, local government, automakers and drivers. But Alison Goebel with the Greater Ohio Policy Center says something’s missing.

“No one is actually there speaking on behalf of public transportation, and that seems like a major oversight," Goebel said.

Greater Ohio does research on economic development and growth in urban and rural areas. Goebel says taxing surface parking lots, parking garages and out-of-state car buyers could net tens of millions that could go to public transit. And she says that investment could mean reducing the need to repair existing roads and build new ones.