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A national transportation research group's study says deterioration, congestion and lack of safety features on Tennessee roads and bridges cost the state's drivers $6 billion annually.
The report by TRIP was released Tuesday, the day before a House floor vote on Gov. Bill Haslam's plan to raise the gas tax for road improvements.
The group says the $6 billion figure includes higher vehicle operating costs, traffic crashes and congestion-related delays.
Tennessee Infrastructure Alliance Chairman Bill Moore says the funding proposed by Haslam is necessary as congestion in cities rises.
The report says congestion in Nashville causes 45 hours of delay annually for the average driver.
Speaker Beth Harwell is calling for civility between her Republican colleagues as the Tennessee House prepares for a contentious vote on Gov. Bill Haslam's transportation funding proposal on Wednesday.
Harwell urged Republican members to "be kind to one another" even if they disagree on the substance of the bill that would raise the state's gas tax for the first time since 1989.
Gov. Bill Haslam's proposal to ban open alcohol bottles or cans in vehicles traveling on Tennessee roads has failed for the year.
Tennessee currently bans drivers from drinking alcohol while at the wheel, but does not extend that prohibition to passengers. That conflicts with federal open container guidelines, which causes about $18 million in federal road money to be redirected toward drunken-driving enforcement.
Haslam called for changing the law so the lost funds could be spent on road and bridge projects across the state, and pledged to find funding for previously dedicated to prosecutors from other sources.
But Senate Majority Leader Mark Norris says he abandoned the bill because of lack of support from his colleagues and because it was a "distraction" to the governor's larger transportation funding proposal.
The Warren County Commission Monday night approved the resignation of longtime District 3 Commissioner Ken Martin. Commissioner Martin last week announced he is resigning because he is moving out of District 3.
The county commission will appoint his replacement at the May session.
The Warren County Pioneer baseball team was trailing White County 2-1 Monday night when rain caused the game to be suspended after four innings. The game will be made up Tuesday prior to the start of the scheduled game between the two teams at Warren County High School.
In softball Tuesday, the Lady Pioneers will host Stone Memorial at 5pm.
Gas prices seemed to find level ground over the weekend after increasing for more than two weeks. Before the weekend, gas prices rose an average of 12 cents in 19 days nationwide, and 14 cents in 20 days in Tennessee.
AAA spokesman Mark Jenkins said gas prices rode the wave of rising oil prices last week, pushing pump prices slightly higher in some regions before eventually stalling out over the weekend. Jenkins said motorists should expect more volatility at the pump throughout the next couple of months, as prices are poised to gain another 30 cents by the summer.
The national average price of a gallon of regular unleaded is $2.40. Tennessee's average is $2.17, up 3 cents from a week ago and an increase of 13 cents from a month ago.