|INDIANAPOLIS— A proposal by State Senator Mark Stoops (D-Bloomington) that would give Monroe County more options for funding public transit cleared the Senate on Monday. Sen. Stoops noted the relationship between access to reliable transportation and economic opportunity.
“My goal is to help rural citizens of Monroe County overcome barriers to job growth by taking advantage of economic and educational opportunities within the city of Bloomington,” said Sen. Stoops. “Expansion of county transit programs would help previously limited commuters access more jobs, healthcare and other services within the community and throughout the county.”
Senate Bill (SB) 128 would enable Monroe County to implement an additional local income tax in order to fund city and county transit projects. The proposal encourages the Monroe County Council to consider the benefits of expanding as well as upgrading the city and county transit programs with a tax increase. Tax increases would be limited between 0.1 percent and 0.25 percent. Additional funding would help transit programs improve routes in order to service the growing population utilizing public transportation as well as the rural population and through local agreements, expand access to neighboring counties and Crane Naval Surface Warfare Center.
“In Bloomington, we have a great transit system that a significant portion of the population uses, however almost half of Monroe County’s population lives outside the city limits,” said Sen. Stoops. “The entire county needs transit to access jobs and services in Bloomington, as well as the employers and educational opportunities located throughout the county.”
The proposal was passed the Senate by a vote of 40-10. The bill will now move to the House for further consideration.
Sen. Stoops represents Indiana Senate District 40 which encompasses Bloomington and Monroe County. For more information on Sen. Stoops, his legislative agenda or other State Senate business call 1-800-382-9467 or visit https://www.indianasenatedemocrats.org/S40.
A photo of Sen. Stoops is available at: https://www.indianasenatedemocrats.org/wp-content/uploads/2015/07/16731816417_b9ac7cdb9c_o.jpg