051915 js 0211.resizeVILLA PARK- As Villa Park residents fill up for the holidays, they are paying thousands of dollars in state gas taxes, but for the past five months municipalities haven’t received that money to help pay for road salt, snow plow repair and patching pot holes and all other road maintenance.

“Governor Rauner is holding your money hostage,” said State Senator Tom Cullerton, a DuPage County Democrat who also represents Villa Park in the Illinois Senate. “Last weekend, DuPage County received over seven inches of snow. Imagine what will happen to our communities when we don’t have the money to put salt on our roads and keep snow plows running.”

The problem, Cullerton explained, is that the money can’t be sent to the communities without some kind of official authorization.

In 2014, Villa Park received $542,276.16 in gas tax money. Across DuPage County, local governments received more than $33.5 million in gas tax money last year.

Other area communities received the following amounts in 2014: Lombard, $1.1 million; Addison, $914,571; Bensenville, $454,339; and York Township, $42,071.10.

Additional information about how much local communities are owed in gas tax money is available at www.IllinoisSenateDemocrats.com.

Cullerton foresaw this looming problem and tried to prevent it. In early September, the Senate approved a plan that would have provided the authority needed to send along the gas tax money. Senate Democrats provided the 36 votes needed to approve it. At the direction of Gov. Rauner, all Republican opposed the legislation.

The legislation – SB 2046– remains pending in the Illinois House.

“This is your money. It belongs in the hands of our municipalities to provide services vital to public safety,” Cullerton said. “Hopefully, Governor Rauner will soon realize he is holding our communities back, instead of moving us forward.”

 

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