Haslam says long-term plan needed for road project backlog

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. (AP) – Gov. Bill Haslam says a long-term revenue plan is needed to address Tennessee’s growing list of unfunded road projects.

The Republican governor spoke to a conference of the Transportation Coalition of Tennessee in Murfreesboro on Tuesday.

He urged the members, many of whom were local government officials, to explain to people in their communities that something needs to be done to tackle the state’s $6 billion backlog.

The governor has suggested a gas tax increase, which has been met with resistance from members of his own party.

Haslam reiterated Tuesday that’s he’s open to discuss proposals to use surplus tax collections but said that would only be one-time money and that the state needs a long-term fix.

When asked about the gas tax following his speech, Haslam told reporters he’s unaware of “another alternative that addresses long-term need.”