Gov. Jay Nixon

Gov. Jay Nixon told The Missourian today that he opposes a three-quarter-cent transportation sales tax that will go on the Aug. 5 ballot for the state’s residents to decide.

Nixon said he does not think this is the right time for a sales tax increase.

He said he was preparing a statement Monday afternoon as to his position on the proposed tax.

If voters approve the transportation sales tax, it would be in effect for 10 years but would not apply to the retail sale of food or prescription medicine.

Proponents say the transportation sales tax is needed to shore up Missouri Department of Transportation revenue.

Locally, the tax could provide funding to widen Highway 47 between Washington and St. Clair as well as fund other projects.

If the tax is approved, it is estimated to bring in $5.4 billion to $6.1 billion over 10 years statewide.

Of that total revenue, 90 percent would be spent at the discretion of the Missouri Highways and Transportation Commission while the other 10 percent would be split between cities and counties throughout the state.