In the 2012 general election, Arkansas voters approved a temporary half-cent sales tax to fund continued construction of four-lane highways to connect all four corners of the state, including the widening of existing four-lane highways to help ease congestion.
Some 200 miles of highways are included in this $1.8 billion program that will also support an estimated 40,000 jobs over the next 10 years. Arkansas’ success in raising funding for highways has gained national attention among highway and transportation agencies across the country.
The State of Arkansas began collecting the half-cent sales tax on July 1, 2013 and it’s expected to generate approximately $230 million annually. As revenue is collected, 70 percent of the money will go toward improvements to the state highway system. 30 percent of the money will go to local governments and will be split – 15 percent for counties and 15 percent for local communities.
In 10 years or less (by 2023), all of the work must be completed and the temporary half-cent sales tax will be abolished by the State Constitution. Truly the voters in Arkansas have taken a big step by investing in themselves and making their state highway system among the best in the nation!