- Associated Press - Thursday, May 4, 2017

JACKSON, Miss. (AP) - The Latest on the Mississippi transportation funding proposals, including the lottery (all times local):

3:15 p.m.

Mississippi House leaders are proposing new ideas to fund highways and bridges. One is to let cities and counties set a local option fuel tax, if residents approve.

The proposals were released Thursday - the same day Gov. Phil Bryant said he’s considering a lottery to boost transportation funding.

Legislators begin a special session June 5 to finish the state budget.

Some hope to also consider a multi-year transportation funding plan. The new House proposal includes $100 million in bonds for roads and bridges in areas with casinos, using casino revenue to pay the debt.

The House is reviving a proposal to take online sales taxes that some companies already collect voluntarily and use part of it for transportation. Lt. Gov. Tate Reeves blocked that during the regular session.


1:01 p.m.

Mississippi Gov. Phil Bryant says he might ask legislators to consider creating a lottery during a special session in June.

He said Thursday he will do it only if the state chamber of commerce supports using a lottery to help pay for highways and bridges.

Transportation has been a big issue for the Mississippi Economic Council, but the group has not taken a public position about a lottery.

Bryant says he asked the state economist to determine how much money a lottery might generate. Republican Bryant spoke out for a lottery during the regular session, but not as a specified source of transportation funding.

Mississippi is one of six states without the game of chance.

House Speaker Philip Gunn opposes a lottery but created a group to study the issue.

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