Posts Tagged "virginia"
Raising the gas tax is a political death sentence, right? Well, not necessarily. In at least two states where legislators raised gas taxes or other fees in the last two years, voters have responded by sending almost all of the supportive members of both parties back to their state houses. Could it be that voters are more supportive of raising revenue than we think?
With a large number of state legislatures convening as the new year gets underway, it’s worth a look back at an important trend from 2013: States stepping forward to raise additional money for transportation. With federal funding remaining flat in 2012′s transportation bill (MAP-21) and after years of deferred action during the long recession, a large number of states, metro areas and local communities moved to supplement federal dollars with new revenues of their own.
Is the per-gallon gas tax going the way of the full-service filling station? To look at the flurry of proposals coming out lately, you might think so. Since the start of the year, major new proposals from industry leaders, governors and state legislatures have sparked a new debate over the ways we collect revenue collection for transportation — at the federal, state and local levels. Industry groups have proposed creative ways to essentially raise the gas tax. At the same time, 2013 already has seen several ambitious proposals for funding transportation outside of the excise tax on gas.
Congress is heading towards a decisive, historic moment on investing in high speed rail for America. But the outcome is far from certain. In the next few weeks, Congress will decide whether or not to give the Department of Transportation $1.2 billion or $4 billion on high speed rail for the next year. $8 billion was allocated for planning and implementing clean, efficient, high speed train travel in the economic stimulus earlier this year, and with another $4 billion, we’d be making a historic $12 billion investment in high speed rail.Tell Congress to keep $4 billion in the bill at www.fourbillion.com
Here in Washington, DC last weekend, the 12-foot-wide bicycle and pedestrian lane of the Woodrow Wilson interstate bridge over the Potomac River held its grand opening, filling with bikers and walkers joining the thousands of cars that cross the bridge each day. The bridge, connecting Virginia and Maryland on the southern part of the Capital Beltway, is a vital transportation link in the region, where Interstate 95 (and the large majority of truck traffic) bypasses Washington, continuing north or south along the eastern seaboard. But making the Wilson Bridge an intermodal success was not easy.