Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett signed a far-reaching transportation bill that lawmakers enacted last week after lengthy debate.
Under the legislation, the state will invest about $7.4 billion over five years and generate roughly $2.4 billion in additional annual revenue once implementation is completed in fiscal 2018.
“I put my signature on Pennsylvania’s passport for the future,” Corbett said at Monday’s signing in Potters Mills, Centre County.
“With Pennsylvania’s infrastructure aging, this funding provides a much-needed boost and ensures the state will remain economically competitive with neighboring states,” Ballard Spahr said in a commentary.
According to the Philadelphia-based law firm, the multibillion-dollar investment will eliminate the need for service cuts, a generate more than 62,000 jobs, 50,000 of them new.
Right before final passage, lawmakers amended the bill to enable counties to impose a new $5 annual vehicle registration fee. Ballard Spahr called this “a potentially powerful local governmental financing tool.”
The new fee could serve as a critical funding source for local and regional transportation projects by leveraging the revenue to finance projects.
Moody’s Investors Service rates Pennsylvania’s general obligation bonds Aa2, while Fitch Ratings and Standard & Poor’s assign AA ratings.