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Pennsylvania House Passes Transportation Bill Amendment

By Tony Romeo

HARRISBURG, Pa. (CBS) - In a stunning reversal, the Pennsylvania state House Tuesday night passed an amendment that would provide major new funding for roads, bridges and mass transit.

The house passed an amendment that contains the transportation funding language, so it's not a yet done deal. But after months of wrangling, the transportation funding effort has now cleared a major hurdle.

It was late Monday night that the House twice voted on this amendment and twice voted it down. Tuesday night, opponents of the funding, like Butler County Republican Daryl Metcalfe, cried foul about the third attempt.

"I didn't think that the message conveyed to the caucus was that we would continue to vote it up or down until it passed, Mr. Speaker. A $2-billion tax increase," Metcalfe said.

The transportation funding would be paid for by lifting a cap on wholesale gasoline taxes over a five-year period and by modest increases in license and registration fees on passenger vehicles. There would be steeper fee increases for commercial vehicles.

There would also be an increase in the fines for some moving violations.

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