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Fort Smith/Fayetteville News | 5newsonline KFSM 5NEWS | Get the local news and weather where you live from 5NEWS. Covering Fort Smith, Fayetteville, Bentonville, and all of Northwest Arkansas and the River Valley.

Arkansas voters pass road tax extension

The half-cent sales tax helps fund road projects across the state.
Credit: KFSM

FAYETTEVILLE, Ark — Arkansas voters have passed Issue 1, an extension of a temporary half-cent sales tax for roads that was approved by voters in 2012.

Governor Asa Hutchinson and Arkansas Attorney General Leslie Rutledge campaigned for the issue across the state in October. 

The governor said both Benton and Washington Counties are at risk of losing more than $5 million every year if the half-cent sales tax ends if Issue 1 doesn’t pass.

RELATED: Governor Hutchinson campaigns for Issue 1

RELATED: LIVE BLOG | Arkansas Election Day

Arkansas Highway Commission Chairman Robert S. Moore, Jr. released the following statement:

"The yes vote on Issue 1 shows that Arkansas citizens see the value of a strong road and highway system. We thank them all for their support and trust. I would like to thank Governor Asa Hutchison for his work to help fund much needed improvements to the state’s road and highway system. With this passage of Issue 1, we will move ahead with the road and bridge work we promised to do.

The Arkansas Highway Commission and ARDOT look forward with anticipation to the future where we have the resources to provide Arkansans with safe, smart and efficient roads and bridges."

Arkansas Department of Transportation Director Lorie Tudor released the following statement:

“The passage of Issue 1 is truly a victory for the State of Arkansas.  The continued investment and progress in our roads will increase safety and mobility and provide economic opportunities for generations to come.  This success is due to a strong collaboration by all stakeholders.

First and foremost, thanks to Governor Asa Hutchinson for his vision for the future when he unveiled his Long Term Highway Funding Plan in 2019 and his continued support and leadership.  His legacy will not be forgotten.

Thanks to the leadership of Representative Jeff Wardlaw and Senator Lance Eads for being the lead sponsors for the legislation that resulted in Issue 1.

Thanks to the Good Roads Foundation and the Roads and Bridges Coalition for their vital support that was crucial to this victory.

And last but not least, thanks to Arkansas’ voters for understanding the value of good roads."