June 19, 2014, 10am PDT
A surprising and unexpected bipartisan plan to increase gas and diesel taxes by 12 cents each emerged June 18 from Sens. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Chris Murphy (D-Conn.). Taxes would increase six cents a gallon annually for two years.
June 19, 2014, 7am PDT
For those who haven't been following the Trust Fund's ticker, it's a bit like the deficit clock except that it runs in the opposite direction, going towards zero or insolvency. The ticker measures the balance in both the highway and transit accounts.
June 16, 2014, 8am PDT
A new transportation funding option proposed by Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.) would repeal the 18.4-cent gas tax, unchanged since 1993, with a "small" tax levied against oil companies on each barrel of oil used to make gasoline.
June 13, 2014, 9am PDT
With federal highway funds likely to be cut off in August unless Congress can reach an agreement on a stopgap solution, some states, e.g., MO, VT, GA, AR have taken matters into their own hands to ensure that vital construction projects continue.
June 6, 2014, 5am PDT
The Washington Post editorializes against the use of general funds to fill the Highway Trust Fund shortfall ($18 billion annually), whether they be dedicated funds or offsets, and evaluates proposals from President Barack Obama and House Republicans.
The Washington Post - Opinions
June 3, 2014, 6am PDT
It's time to fund federal transportation like most other nations do—rely less on highway user fees that dedicate funds to highways and transition to funding roads from the general fund, perhaps in the same amount that they contribute to GDP.
The New York Times - Opinion
June 1, 2014, 11am PDT
This could have been our Friday Funny—but it's for real. House Republicans have suggested that reforming the United States Postal Service, such as ending Saturday delivery and other cost cutting could be used to shore-up the Highway Trust Fund
May 29, 2014, 7am PDT
"What program would you cut to continue the same level of transportation spending without raising the gas tax, e.g. cancer treatment programs, Head Start?," asks Streetsblog USA's Tanya Snyder after reading Sen. Bob Corker's (R-Tenn.) recommendation.
May 15, 2014, 5am PDT
Plenty, according to Tanya Snyder, Streetsblog USA editor, who finds Obama's Grow America plan far superior. Outside of not including a gas tax to fill the Trust Fund gap, she finds the proposal "underfunded and highway centric." She is not alone.
May 13, 2014, 2pm PDT
The bill to reauthorize the current surface transportation law, "Moving Ahead for Progress in the 21st Century", a.k.a. MAP-21, was released on Monday and will be "marked up" on Thursday. Spending is kept at current levels of $50 billion a year.
May 13, 2014, 8am PDT
Last Thursday, House and Senate leaders announced agreement on an $8.2 billion waterways infrastructure bill, and if they have their way, it won't be their last major agreement. On Monday, a successor highway bill (to MAP-21) will be released.
May 11, 2014, 5am PDT
If Congress can't agree how to fund the Highway Trust Fund shortfall, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx warned state DOTs that he will be unable to reimburse them for funds already spent. The redline is the $4 billion mark projected to come July.
The Wall Street Journal - Politics and Policy
April 26, 2014, 1pm PDT
A recent article by Yonah Freemark details the policy agenda of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, the former mayor of Charlotte and successor of well-regarded Transportation Secretary Ray La Hood.
Metropolitan Planning Council - The Connector
April 7, 2014, 8am PDT
While tolling will not fill the Highway Trust Fund gap, it can finance improvements for specific interstate highways that would otherwise be funded by a sustainable trust fund, not one approaching insolvency. Why not allow states the option to toll?
The New York Times - U.S.
April 6, 2014, 9am PDT
Avid highway opponents are less concerned about filling the Trust Fund gap, notwithstanding the effect on transit, and more on stopping road expansion. Widening of Colorado's I-25 and U.S. 26 in Oregon may halt without an agreement for new funds.
March 18, 2014, 10am PDT
Georgia Department of Transportation Commissioner Keith Golden recently told a gathering about the state’s reliance on federal money for transportation, saying, “We’ve got to find a way to break away from our dependence on federal dollars.”
March 6, 2014, 7am PST
How best to "plug the growing hole" in the Highway Trust Fund which provides the federal revenue for roads and transit: increase the gas tax, new vehicle miles traveled fees, more road tolls, or "corporate tax reform"? All but one is a user fee.
Politico Morning Transportation
February 20, 2014, 9am PST
As we've noted numerous times, the Highway Trust Fund will become insolvent around the end of the fiscal year - Sept. 30, just when MAP-21, the transportation authorization bill, expires. We were wrong. The new HTF "ticker" explains the bad news.
Politico Morning Transportation
February 14, 2014, 10am PST
At a Senate Environment and Public Works Committee meeting on Feb. 12, leaders from big labor, big business, AASHTO, and AMTRAK testified to the importance of keeping the Highway Trust Fund solvent. The first two specified increasing the gas tax.
January 15, 2014, 10am PST
From Republican congressman from Ill. to President Obama's first Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood now takes on a new role as a co-chair of the bipartisan coalition, Building America's Future, to advocate for increased infrastructure investment.