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Since 2008, Congress has transferred more than $140 Billion dollars from the General Fund to supplement the Highway Trust Fund. Congress has also taken a no new taxes position and not raised the federal gas tax since 1993.
To fill the funding gap, nineteen states and the District of Columbia have raised their gas tax since 2013. However, given rising demand, states are desperately seeking new ways to finance and fund their major infrastructure needs.
Tolling is one solution to this problem. However, current federal law prohibits tolling of existing Interstate highways, except under limited circumstances. Given the increasing need for additional transportation investment, now is the time to reconsider this policy. Across the country, tolling is already a proven solution and can serve as a method to pay for much needed reconstruction of the nation’s Interstate System. Increasingly, the federal government has been unable to provide additional funding to states and local governments. Therefore, states and localities will need to identify new ways to fund critical roadway projects. Allowing states greater flexibility to toll their Interstate highways for the purpose of reconstruction could serve as one way to fund critical roadway projects.
This webinar will address the impact that this change would have – both from a budgetary and economic standpoint.
Robert Puentes, President and CEO, Eno Center for Transportation Robert will set the scene for the webinar by providing an overview of transportation funding and financing today.
Emil Frankel, former Commissioner of the Connecticut Department of Transportation and Senior Fellow, Eno Center for TransportationJeff Davis, Senior Fellow, Eno Center for Transportation Eno Senior Fellows Jeff Davis and Emil Frankel will provide the historical context for tolling in general and they will specifically discuss the history behind current tolling policies related to the Interstate System
Patrick Jones, Executive Director and CEO, International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA)Patrick will address the increasing challenges faced by states as they look to fund and finance major infrastructure – and he will also address how tolling has played an increasing role across the country in meeting these needs. Congress and the Trump Administration have expressed an interest in developing a new infrastructure initiative that may reduce existing red tape – and it may include additional federal funding. But even with additional funding, it will not be enough to take care of the vast investment needs in every state. Tolling can and should be an available solution.
Garrett Eucalitto, Undersecretary for Transportation, Conservation, and Development, Office of Policy and Management, State of ConnecticutGarrett will discuss Connecticut’s recent efforts to increase transportation funding to address looming deficits facing its transportation programs, and legislative efforts to reinstate tolling on highways after 32 years.
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