MESA, Ariz. -- Mesa Mayor Scott Smith has been pushing for the construction of new interstate in Arizona, but on Wednesday he wouldn't say whether a tax increase is needed to build it.
"Unfortunately, in this state, what we do is we automatically jump to the discussion of what tax are you going to impose, what are you gong to pay, when are you going to do it," Smith said.
The Mesa leader sits on an advisory committee for the proposed Interstate 11 that would run from Casa Grande, northwest through Kingman and on to Las Vegas.
During a press conference in his City Hall office, the Mesa leader said the state needs the I-11 to promote trade and commerce.
But he wouldn't say if he supports a tax hike to make it happen.
"The answer is, the I-11 is in its initial stages," Mr. Smith said. "And no, the tax increase is not on the table now and it's not about any of the discussions we're having about transportation."
Mr. Smith, a Republican, is one of the biggest names if not one of the biggest political teases in the state right now. For months, Mr. Smith has flirted with the idea of running for governor but hasn't made up his mind, yet.
Even though he's not decided if he'll seek the state's top office, Mr. Smith's political enemies would pound on any support of a tax increase, as tax hikes and Republican primaries are as compatible as Rosie O'Donnell and Donald Trump.