Oklahoma City, OK 73105
For Immediate Release: August 30, 2007
Photo of the I-35 bridge collapse in Minneapolis taken
by Sen. Branan.
Senate Transportation Co-Chair Visits Bridge Collapse;
Says Road and Bridge Funding Must be Top Priority
A recent family trip to Minnesota gave Sen. Cliff
Branan the opportunity to get a first-hand look at the collapsed
I-35 bridge in Minneapolis. Branan, who is Co-Chair of the Senate
Transportation Committee, said Oklahoma must learn from the tragedy
and make road and bridge funding a top priority in the upcoming
2008 legislative session.
“I surveyed the scene and was struck by the thought that this
bridge looked like it had actually been in better condition than
the I-40 cross-town bridge in Oklahoma City,” said Branan.
“As I looked at the wreckage, it really illustrated why it
is so important to do everything possible to avoid a repeat of this
tragedy in Oklahoma.”
The Oklahoma City Republican was among the lawmakers who advocated
greater transportation funding after years of neglect. Branan said
progress has been made, but there is more to be done. He also said
it was critical for lawmakers to look at how motor vehicle taxes
are currently allocated in order to boost road and bridge funding.
“Right now, Oklahoma dedicates nearly as much from motor vehicle
taxes to fish habitats as we do to the State Transportation Fund.
This needs to change,” Branan said, explaining currently,
the state dedicates just 0.31 percent of motor vehicle tax collections
to the State Transportation Fund, but dedicates .034 percent of
motor vehicle taxes to the Wildlife Conservation Fund for fish habitats
“If we’re serious about fixing our roads and bridges,
it’s time to dedicate more of our transportation taxes to
ensure our transportation infrastructure is as safe as it can be,”
For more information, contact:
Senator Branan's Office: (405) 521-5543