The path to business success occasionally passes through the garage—famously demonstrated by industry titans like Amazon or Hewlett Packard. Zoning codes should encourage, not obstruct, these kinds of American success stories.
After it's first hearing, the PATH Act is not looking very promising to keep federal transportation reimbursements flowing to state DOTs late next month when the Highway Trust Fund is expected to approach insolvency. The one user fee was dropped.
A $9 billion patch bill was drafted by Sen. Finance Comm. Chair Ron Wyden to continue transportation spending to Dec. 31. Most of the funds come from a change in how Individual Retirement Accounts are administered and a heavy truck use tax increase.
The House Republican plan to gut Saturday postal delivery to pay for six months of highway spending was dropped on June 18. It appears it was a casualty of Majority Leader Eric Cantor's primary loss in his Virginia congressional district.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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
"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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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.
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?
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.
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.”
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.