ODOT Considers Accepting Donations

March 21, 2017

The Oregon Senate Business and Transportation Committee on Monday passed a bill sponsored by Senate Republican Deputy Leader Tim Knopp of Bend, Oregon, to set up a fund in which state residents could donate to the Oregon Department of Transportation for desired projects.

Senate Bill 798 would establish a state transportation donation fund and continuously appropriate moneys in the fund to ODOT for purposes specified in the gift or donation. Under the bill, donations with no specific intent can be used by the department.

"One of my commitments as a legislator is ensuring Oregon's government is responsive and flexible enough to meet the needs of citizens," Knopp explained. "Establishing a transparent and accessible donation fund for resolving specific safety problems on our transportation infrastructure is a critical part of that commitment."

Knopp did not file any documents estimating how much revenue the state might expect from donations but said in an interview that "There were a lot of people concerned with the deaths of their fellow Central Oregonians in car accidents on the highway."

The bill was referred to the Joint Ways and Means Committee.

No word on if the donations would be tax-deductible.