Don’t eat your seed corn.

This phrase is common in our lives, but the common sense underlying it is not as widespread as we would like.

We all know that if we do not invest in our farms and our equipment, they start to fall apart. Fences don’t mend themselves, and neither do our roads and bridges. Too many of us drive hours around weight-restricted bridges that are years overdue for maintenance and repair. This situation costs us all time and money and puts every driver at risk.

Our state road network is the lifeblood of our economy — both rural and urban. Whether our products come from the field, the barn or the pasture, they must travel over Missouri’s roads and bridges to get to our customers. It is past time that Missourians reinvest in our infrastructure, and we can finally do that with Proposition D.

Proposition D will raise the motor fuels tax and inject new money into our state and local road funds. We haven’t increased road funding in this state since 1996, and it is past time we acted.

Proposition D will raise $288 million for the state to tackle the backlog of poor-condition bridges. More than $123 million will be shared by our counties and cities using a formula that weighs road miles along with population, ensuring that our rural communities get their fair share. 

Proposition D also stabilizes funding for our Missouri State Highway Patrol, so our troopers have the equipment they need to keep the highways safe.

Right now Missouri isn’t planning ahead — we’re eating our seed corn by paying for 2018 roads with 1996 funding. That is why we are asking our fellow farmers, ranchers and rural Missourians to join us in voting “Yes” for Proposition D on Election Day. 

Authors of this article are Blake Hurst, president of the Missouri Farm Bureau; Bobby Simpson, president-elect, Missouri Cattlemen’s Association;  C. Brooks Hurst, president, Missouri Soybean Association; and Kyle Kirby, president, Missouri Corn Growers Association.

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