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Session Laws, 1954
Volume 604, Page 291   View pdf image (33K)
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April 2, 1954.

Honorable George W. Della
President of the Senate
State House
Annapolis, Maryland

Dear Mr. President:

I am returning herewith Senate Bill 78 which would defer
from 1955 until 1956 the increased motor vehicle registra-
tion fees which the General Assembly of Maryland over-
whelmingly approved at the 1953 session, as a part of the
twelve-year road building program. This program, as final-
ly enacted, represents the combined judgment of outstand-
ing engineering and fiscal experts, including personnel of
the State Roads Commission and impartial advisors and
consultants of unquestioned repute and standing in the com-
munity. The entire program was the subject of extensive
public consideration and represents the first comprehensive
approach to the Maryland road problem undertaken on a
long range planning basis.

A fundamental part of the program was the provision for
adequate financing of road construction and maintenance,
based on carefully projected estimates and financial studies.
The integrated revenue projections over a twelve-year period
represent a painstaking and conservative effort to avoid
any lag between planning and performance because of a lack
of funds. The available revenue experience—eight months—
since the effective date of the enactment of the twelve-year
program is much too short a period to permit of adequate
and accurate comparison with the projection of revenue
estimates. At the present time I am advised that revenues
are levelling off at a point in line with estimates. Sources
available for construction funds, particularly the 2% titling
tax on motor vehicles, have shown a decided decline since
December, 1953, which is balanced at this point by an excess
of previous revenue collections over estimates.

The overall financial picture is now on a sound basis and
in line with revenue estimates for the requirements of the
road program. At this time, a further deferment of an in-
crease in registration fees would have an adverse affect on
the program, both from the standpoint of construction and
maintenance. In order to properly understand the inter-
play of the various revenue sources and the necessity for
maintaining each of them as provided in the twelve-year
program, a brief word of explanation is necessary. The
state revenues available for highway purposes are derived
from three main sources. The gasoline tax and the 2%


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Session Laws, 1954
Volume 604, Page 291   View pdf image (33K)
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