Fewer drivers in Washington means less money for road construction

Record fuel costs are forcing people to drive less, and that is cutting into tax collections that pay for road construction in Washington state.

It's a cycle that might prompt state leaders to seek more money through tolls, shifting funds from health or environmental projects, or a new version of the tax on car values that voters rejected years ago.

"There are a lot of things going on in the world that affect our ability to put those projects out there. When we're getting a reduction in consumption, and this increase in prices, it's going to be a tough one for us," state budget director Victor Moore advised state Department of Transportation Secretary Paula Hammond recently.

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