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Posts Tagged ‘Highway Trust Fund’

Open Letter from Secretary Foxx and 11 Former DOT Secretaries Urging Congress to Address Long-Term Transportation Needs

Saturday, July 26th, 2014

As Congress considers legislation to avoid a shortfall of the Highway Trust Fund, Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx and 11 of his predecessors offered the following open letter to Congress. In addition to Secretary Foxx, Secretaries Ray LaHood, Mary Peters, Norman Mineta, Rodney Slater, Federico Peña, Samuel Skinner, Andrew Card, James Burnley, Elizabeth Dole, William Coleman and Alan Boyd all signed the letter. Their message: Congress’ work doesn’t end with the bill under consideration. Transportation in America still needs a much larger, longer-term investment.

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States’ Transportation Revenue Initiatives Help to Compensate for an Absence of Congressional Action on Long-Term Funding

Tuesday, July 15th, 2014

Innovation Newsbriefs
Vol. 25, No.
While transportation stakeholders and the Washington press corps focus on the impending insolvency of the Highway Trust Fund and bemoan the fact that the House-Senate agreement to replenish the Trust Fund provides only short-term funding ($10.8 billion) through May 2015, they are ignoring developments outside the Beltway that go a long way toward compensating for an absence of congressional action on long-term funding. For in fact, individual states, far from sitting idly by, are responding to the fiscal uncertainties in Washington by stepping up and raising additional revenue to meet their transportation needs.

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AASHTO’s “Nation at a Crossroads” Infographic Calls for Action

Thursday, July 10th, 2014
Without Federal Investment States Can

The infographic reveals a slew of alarming facts and predictions centering on the depletion of MAP-21 funding by Fall of 2014, which will lead to states being responsible for 100% of transportation funding. Did you know that, already, 45% of Americans don’t have access to transit? Did you know that 1 in 4 of our bridges is in need of significant repair? While states have come up with some viable funding mechanisms of their own, it’s clearly time for the Fed to step in and replenish this vital source of transportation funding.

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The Highway Trust Fund and Surface Transportation Programs in the Federal Budget

Tuesday, July 1st, 2014
Figure 1: Receipts, Outlays, and Balance or Shortfall for the Highway Trust Fund Under CBO’s April 2014 Baseline

CONGRESSIONAL BUDGET OFFICE
The federal government spends more than $50 billion per year on surface transportation programs, mostly in the form of grants to state and local governments. Much of this spending is for highways and mass transit programs financed through the Highway Trust Fund. Those programs have an unusual treatment in the federal budget, and the way they are classified in the budget facilitates the spending of more money from the trust fund than there are dedicated revenues to support such spending. Those revenues come from excise taxes on the sale of motor fuels, trucks and trailers, and truck tires, and from taxes on the use of certain kinds of vehicles.

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States’ Fiscal Initiatives Offer a Solution to the Impending Trust Fund Shortfall

Friday, June 6th, 2014

Innovation Newsbriefs
Vol. 25, No. 8

While transportation stakeholders and the Washington press corps are agonizing about the impending Highway Trust Fund shortfall and its impact on the federal transportation program, they are ignoring developments outside the Beltway that go a long way toward mitigating the prospective funding shortage. For in fact, individual states, far from standing idly by, are responding to the fiscal uncertainties in Washington by stepping up and augmenting their transportation budgets.

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As the Highway Trust Fund Runs Low on Cash, States Come to the Rescue with Creative Funding Initiatives

Thursday, April 10th, 2014

Innovation Newsbriefs
Vol. 25, No. 5
With federal transportation spending outpacing tax receipts by some $1.25 billion/month, the cash balance of the Federal Highway Trust is drawing perilously close to the point where the U.S Department of Transportation will be obliged to institute cash management strategies—such as reimbursing states weekly rather than on a daily basis— to keep the Trust Fund account solvent. Based on current spending and revenue trends, this point —a cash balance of $4 billion—may be reached as early as late July according to some estimates.

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Hardhats for Highways: Tell Congress How Many Jobs Are At Risk

Wednesday, March 12th, 2014

Hardhats for Highways is organizing a call to action for construction workers across the nation.

Starting April 1, 2014, contractors, construction business owners, labor leaders and everyone else representing constituents in the highway industry are asked to visit their Congressional delegations to deliver a hardhat. Every hat will be affixed with a sticker detailing the number of jobs at risk in each firm. If the deluge of hardhats piling up in offices throughout the nation don’t get Congress’ attention, the numbers certainly will.

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States’ Growing Role in Funding the Nation’s Transportation Infrastructure

Friday, January 17th, 2014

Innovation Newsbriefs
Vol. 25, No. 1
As we enter the new year (celebrating our 25th year of publication), and as the deadline for reauthorization of the surface transportation program draws closer, those who want the new bill to sharply increase federal spending for transportation face a vexing reality. The Highway Trust Fund, a vital source of support for the federal surface transportation program for over half a century, no longer can keep up with the nation’s growing transportation needs. A combination of more fuel-efficient cars, rising CAFE standards and consumer embrace of hybrid vehicles has kept gas tax revenue stagnant, throwing the Trust Fund out of balance with the rising demand for transportation funds. A possible decline in per capita travel could cause the future imbalance to grow even larger.

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A Credible Funding Solution for Transportation

Tuesday, April 16th, 2013

Innovation NewsBriefs
Vol. 24, No. 6
As we have argued in recent columns, no one disputes President Obama’s and the infrastructure advocates’ claim that some of America’s transportation facilities, are reaching the limit of their useful life and need reconstruction. Nor does any one disagree about the need to expand infrastructure to meet the needs of a growing population.

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Searching for Novel Approaches to Transportation Funding

Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013

Innovation NewsBriefs
Vol. 24, No. 1
As we enter the New Year (and begin our 24th year of publication), the debate about transportation funding is taking a new turn. Talk of raising the federal gas tax has become muted and even the efficacy of the gas tax itself is being questioned. And no wonder: vehicles are becoming more fuel efficient, CAFE standards are becoming more stringent, vehicle use is leveling off, and hybrids and electric vehicles are expected to slowly but surely increase their market penetration.

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