Ten Years of Highway Trust Fund Insolvency
On September 5, 2017, "the U.S. Department of Transportation made the stunning announcement that the federal Highway Trust Fund had run out of money and that state governments would no longer be guaranteed speedy reimbursement for the federal-aid highway expenses that the states had already incurred," according to an article by Jeff Davis. "The announcement prompted an immediate $8 billion bailout by Congress in the form of a transfer of moneys from the general fund of the Treasury to the Trust Fund."
Since that time, Congress has not implemented a sustainable solution to the structural flaws of the Highway Trust Fund. On the contrary, explains Davis, "Congress has instead provided another $135.6 billion in bailouts, for a total of $143.6 billion ($139.9 billion from the general fund and $3.7 billion from gasoline and diesel taxes originally deposited in a different trust fund)."
The remainder of the article discusses the history and details of the beleaguered Highway Trust Fund along several threads of discussion. In a lot of detail, the post discusses "how to" bankrupt the Highway Trust Fund, the consequences of bankrupting the Highway Trust Fund, and the "path of least resistance" likely to determine the future of the Highway Trust Fund for the foreseeable future.