Missouri Rude Awakenings: Without a fuel tax, toll roads may gain traction

By every measure, gasoline is cheap right now.

With an average price in Missouri on Tuesday of $2.07 per gallon, it is far below the peak of nearly $4 a gallon that hit in 2011 and below the price we have paid for most of the past 10 years. When I fill up, I still calculate how much I am saving compared to the peak price at my local convenience store of $3.89 a gallon.

It is also about 65 cents a gallon cheaper than it was last year when lawmakers put the ill-fated Proposition D on November’s ballot to increase the fuel tax by 10 cents per gallon over four years. When we voted, the price was about $2.50 a gallon.

The defeat was the second time in four years that voters have rejected a plan to dramatically increase state spending on roads. If Senate Majority Leader Caleb Rowden gets his way, there will be one more try for new tax revenue for roads and then it will be time to consider toll roads.