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Committee recommends extension of tire tax.

January 13, 1999
By: CLAYTON BELLAMY
State Capital Bureau

JEFFERSON CITY - Columbians may have to continue rolling out extra green for tires.

A special House Committee on solid waste has proposed extending for another three years a $.50 fee on tire sales that is scheduled to expire in 2001.

The fee funds the clean up of waste tire sites throughout the state.

Ed Galbraith, enforcement section chief of Solid Waste Management, the agency that handles trash, said there are about 6.5 million waste tires in the state. The cost of cleaning up a single tire is about $1.50.

Debate in the committee centered around the length of the extension to recommend. Rep. Gary Marble, R-Neosho, argued against the committee's planned five year extension.

"A two year extension will be sufficient because about half the state's tires have been cleared in the last two years," Marble said. "My goal is to remove the fee from the public as soon as possible."

The committee finally recommended a three year extension. State Representative Gary Wiggins, R-New Cambria, who chairs the committee, said that after two years the fee will be reexamined and either extended again or reduced.

At a cost of about $1.50 per tire, at least $10 million would be needed to rid the state of the known waste tire dumps and another $2 million estimated for sites not yet found, Galbraith said. Solid Waste Management projects that they will have only $5.9 million dollars for waste tire clean up by 2001, the original expiration for the tire fee.