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Filling Potholes: ToothFairy Delivery 'Never Going To Happen'

With the second highest car insurance rates in the nation and the third worst-rated highways, according to the latest national report by, sometimes it seems like Louisiana’s roads are mostly potholes loosely held together with asphalt patches.

It’s obvious that existing revenue sources aren’t going to get for us more than we’ve been getting and if we wait for the Easter Bunny or the Tooth Fairy to deliver these infrastructure projects, that’s never going to happen,” Governor John Bel Edwards said.

The Governor's Task Force on Infrastructure Investment meets Tuesday morning, to work on that, and Edwards says they won't just be repeating studies that have been done and shelved before.

It doesn’t make any sense to just have another study to determine we have a $12-billion backlog. We know that there’s a backlog, so we’re going to have to come up with some strategies to make sure that we can alleviate it,” Edwards explained. “That cannot be done without resources and without revenue.”

Task force member Kenny Havard, head of the House Transportation Committee, has stated a hike in the gasoline tax is one of the most likely options. I asked the governor why an increase in the fuel tax wasn’t considered during either of the special legislative sessions earlier this year.

The Constitution requires all the proceeds from a gas tax to go to the Transportation Trust Fund. The most pressing problems we had required us to be able to fund hospitals and TOPS and universities and corrections,” he said.

Edwards further stated he has requested this task force to come up with a full plan of action, considering the state’s yet-to-be specified future bridge, port, and highway needs.

Not just the backlog, not just what might be done within available resources, but what should be done in Louisiana,” he elaborated. “And then look for opportunities to create revenue streams to make sure that we can fund that.”