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Archive for the ‘Policy’ Category

Washington, DC: Grinding to a Halt

Thursday, July 23rd, 2015
Figure 1. Nonattainment with current (75 ppb) and proposed (65 ppb) ozone standards.

UNITED STATES CHAMBER OF COMMERCE
As Congress gears up to debate reauthorization of surface transportation programs, this report is intended to call attention to a significant emerging threat to addressing the aforementioned transportation challenges: the Environmental Protection Agency’s (EPA) forthcoming ozone national ambient air quality standards (NAAQS). This report analyzes the impact of these regulations on transportation projects, with a focus on the Washington, D.C. metropolitan area.

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A Lasting Solution to the Transportation Funding Crisis

Monday, July 13th, 2015

Innovation Newsbriefs
Vol. 26, No. 6
Trust Fund spending could be curtailed by progressively shifting funding responsibilities for local transportation to the States and localities and limiting Trust Fund expenditures to projects and programs that represent core federal responsibilities or are of truly strategic or national significance.

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How a Gas Tax Increase Affects the Retail Pump Price

Wednesday, July 8th, 2015
Weekly Change in U.S. Gasoline Prices, 2005 to 2014

AMERICAN ROAD & TRANSPORTATION BUILDERS ASSOCIATION (ARTBA)
Based on these findings, it is projected that a 15 cents-per-gallon gas tax increase at the federal level would likely result in a 5.9 cents-per-gallon increase in the pump price the week of enactment plus an additional 2.4 cents-per-gallon within four weeks of enactment. Thereafter, it would be a relatively insignificant pricing factor. In fact, the impact of a 15 cent increase in the federal gas tax would likely be “lost” in the week-to-week price fluctuation that has occurred at the gas pump for the last 10 years.

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Options for Paying for Highway Spending

Tuesday, July 7th, 2015
Spending for Highways and Transit, by Level of Government, 1956 to 2014

CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE
…with its current revenue sources, the Highway Trust Fund cannot support spending at the current rate. The Congressional Budget Office estimates that spending in fiscal year 2015 for highways and transit programs funded from the Highway Trust Fund will be $44 billion and $8 billion, respectively, whereas revenues collected for those purposes are projected to be $34 billion and $5 billion, respectively. By CBO’s estimate, at the end of fiscal year 2015, the balance in the trust fund’s highway account will fall to about $2 billion and the balance in its transit account will be about $1 billion.

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Guest on The Infra Blog: Phineas Baxandall, Senior Policy Analyst, U.S. PIRG

Thursday, July 2nd, 2015
Phineas Baxandall on The Infra Blog

Phineas Baxandall is a Senior Policy Analyst at U.S. PIRG and directs program on tax and budget issues as well as transportation. He often presents at conferences and has given invited testimony and public comment to state legislatures, Congress, and the U.S. Department of Transportation. His blogs appear on the National Journal Transportation Expert blog, Huffington Post and StreetsBlog. At U.S. PIRG, he has authored or co-authored dozens of reports, including a series examining the end of America’s driving boom, a series on infrastructure privatization, and a series on state government spending transparency.

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ASCE: The Road to a New Transportation Bill

Thursday, June 25th, 2015
ASCE: The Road to a New Transportation Bill

Hear Senator Inhofe’s insights on the federal government’s role in infrastructure as outlined in the U.S. Constitution in the latest episode of ASCE’s Interchange video series. Gain insight on the importance of a long-term surface transportation bill, and find out what ASCE members and the public can do to help advance this important cause.

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A Conservative Vision for the Future of the Highway Trust Fund

Thursday, June 18th, 2015

Innovation NewsbriefsVol. 26, No. 5Submitted to the House Committee on Ways and Means and the Senate Committee on Finance in response to their invitation for written comments in connection with the hearings on Long-Term Financing of the Highway Trust Fund, June 17, and June 18, 2015 respectively.Many states, facing repeated short-term program extensions and anticipating uncertain prospects for increased congressional funding, have […]

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Guest on The Infra Blog: Tom Kimbis, Vice President of Executive Affairs, Solar Energy Industries Association

Wednesday, June 17th, 2015
Tom Kimbis, SEIA

Tom has been working in renewable energy since 2000, when he began supporting research, analysis, legislative, and planning efforts across all energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies for the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE).

“I’ve seen efficiencies for solar increase over time, and for many years efficiency was talked about as the Holy Grail…what we need right now is not for panels to double their efficiency; what we really need is to have access to cheaper capital, and to eliminate some of the barriers that exist in states and jurisdictions across the country that make it difficult for people to choose solar.”

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The State of Oregon’s Bridges

Monday, June 15th, 2015
minuteOregon bridges aren’t getting any youngerThe

TRANSPORTATION FOR AMERICA
The average age of these sub-par bridges is 55 years — over the typical design life of 50 years and 14 years older than the average age of all Oregon bridges (41 years old). More than one in twelve Oregon bridges were built before 1948 — which means more than 680 bridges are older than the Korean War and creation of Medicare.

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Texas: Governor Abbott Paves the Way for Historical Transportation Funding Increase

Tuesday, June 9th, 2015
Texas: Governor Abbott Paves the Way for Historical Transportation Funding Increase

Video clip illustrates Governor Abbott’s dedication to increasing funding for roads throughout the state of Texas, and also doing away with diversions. From now on, taxes for roads will be spent on roads.

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