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Hutchison outlines plans for Texas transportation needs

DALLAS — After months of hammering Gov. Rick Perry's record on transportation, Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison outlined her own plan to keep Texas traffic moving Tuesday.

Hutchison's proposal included vows to reform the Texas Department of Transportation and support toll roads less often than Perry.

But she provided no details on how future transportation improvements would be funded if she becomes governor.

Instead, Hutchison promised to conduct an audit of the Transportation Department and appoint a committee to recommend ways to reduce spending and, if needed, find new revenue. Any new fees or taxes would have to be approved by voters in regional referendums.

"I think it's odd that we've had such a huge increase in spending but very little to show for it," Hutchison said.

If elected, Hutchison's plan would likely kill the hopes of many North Texas leaders that state lawmakers could pass a local option transportation package in the next legislative session in 2011. A group of area elected officials unsuccessfully championed such a measure this year.

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