There's a legitimate reason for toll roads: Upkeep

Tuesday, February 13, 2018
 | 
Chris Woodward (OneNewsNow.com)

toll plaza ahead signSome taxpayers may not be happy with one approach to the Trump administration's infrastructure plan, but one expert says it would provide a consistent revenue stream.

While he is concerned about cost and other things in the president's $1.5 trillion plan, Marc Scribner of the Competitive Enterprise Institute also sees positives. "There are a number of things in here that free-market fiscal conservatives should like, such as expanding states' authority to toll their own interstate segments," he says.

Oftentimes, taxpayers express frustration about having to pay to use an interstate highway that their tax dollars help to build. OneNewsNow asked Scribner about such concerns.

"Tolling can provide a consistent revenue stream that a lot of projects don't have," he answers. "So when people talk about [having] already paid for a road through their tax dollars, what they're generally talking about is they paid for the initial construction.

Scribner

"But the majority of project costs occur after initial construction is complete," he continues. "So tolling can provide a way to keep those revenues flowing and allow for maintenance over time."

According to Scribner, a lot of the current problems with the nation's infrastructure are state and local infrastructure managers failing to maintain what they already have.

"And then if you're in an urban area, you may want to use dynamically priced tolling to mitigate congestion," he continues. "What we do know is that in many areas it simply isn't feasible to continually expand the number of highway lane miles to meet population growth. Instead, you need to put a price on the use of that – and that needs to vary by time of day so that you don't have people who aren't facing a charge, everyone rushing during the morning rush hour, to try to use the facility. That's what causes congestion.

"So we do know that pricing is really the only way to ensure that we're going to have uncongested roads while also providing that needed, ongoing, consistent revenue stream," Scribner concludes.

In recent years, other ideas to help pay for infrastructure projects have included increasing the federal gas tax. Revenue has been down in recent years, based on a number of factors, including more people using public transportation and/or driving fuel-efficient vehicles the government has been telling the auto industry to manufacture. Scribner says President Trump's plan doesn't mention the gas tax or any other pay-for.

Another approach is to establish a pay-per-mile tax, although that idea is still in a testing phase.

Consider Supporting Us?

The staff at Onenewsnow.com strives daily to bring you news from a biblical perspective. If you benefit from this platform and want others to know about it please consider a generous gift today.

MAKE A DONATION

Comments

We moderate all reader comments, usually within 24 hours of posting (longer on weekends). Please limit your comment to 300 words or less and ensure it addresses the article - NOT another reader's comments. Comments that contain a link (URL), an inordinate number of words in ALL CAPS, rude remarks directed at other readers, or profanity/vulgarity will not be approved. More details

SIGN UP FOR OUR DAILY NEWSBRIEF

SUBSCRIBE

VOTE IN OUR POLL

If I were a Christian in California – and AB 2943 were to become law – I would:

CAST YOUR VOTE

GET PUSH NOTIFICATIONS

SUBSCRIBE

LATEST AP HEADLINES

Trump ready to ease rules on coal-fired power plants
Colorado man charged with murder in deaths of wife, 2 kids
Kavanaugh in memo pushed graphic sex questions for Clinton
Pope: No effort spared to fight abuse, but offers no details
Trump dares Brennan to sue because his clearance was revoked
AP sources: Prosecutors preparing charges against Cohen
2 detained after shots are fired at US Embassy in Turkey

LATEST FROM THE WEB

Manafort, defense team 'very happy' after jury fails to reach verdict in third day of deliberations
Poll: Voters strongly disagree with Cuomo on American greatness
Moderate Dem governor moves left, supports assault weapons ban as possible 2020 run looms
Alex Jones is just the beginning
Record number of white South African farms for sale but no one is buying

CARTOON OF THE DAY

Cartoon of the Day

REASON & COMPANY

NEXT STORY
A campaign for heart control

elementary schoolWe put messages before our students all the time expecting it to make a difference. Now, one pro-family organization is wanting to add another one that listeners are all familiar with.