A proposal to issue $325 million of revenue bonds to upgrade and repair state rural roads was approved by the Louisiana House Tuesday without a dissenting vote.
The measure will be considered next week by the Senate.
The bonds would be supported by half of the annual revenue currently going to the state highway improvement fund. The fund receives $50 million to $60 million a year from drivers license fees and commercial vehicle registrations.
Hill is sponsored by Rep. Jim Fannin, D-Jonesboro.
“It will allow more roads to be done quicker,” Fannin said during a debate on the measure. “We still have some state roads that are gravel.”
Transportation Secretary Sherri LeBas said the state expects to issue $100 million of the 20-year bonds in fiscal 2013, $100 million in 2014 and $125 million in 2015.
Proceeds would be used to upgrade 1,100 miles of road in every parish except Orleans, she said.
“Many of them have not been touched in quite a number of years,” LeBas said at a hearing on the measure.
The Department of Transportation and Development has a $12.4 billion backlog of road and bridge projects, she said.