Ahead of President Obama’s budget set to be released Wednesday, the International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association (IBTTA), the worldwide association representing toll facility owners and operators and the businesses that serve them, has released a new fact sheet, “Tolling in Brief,” calling on the federal government to embrace additional funding options, including tolling.
IBTTA’s “Tolling in Brief” fact sheet states, “The federal gas tax alone isn’t enough to support road infrastructure, and governments need a wider mix of funding options. Tolling is one viable option.” The fact sheet continues, “The federal government can’t afford to pay for many of the transportation investments the country needs … state and local governments should have the flexibility to choose the funding tools that work best for them.”
“I could fill my office from floor to ceiling with the studies and reports over the last decade showing that the revenue raised from the federal gas tax is no longer effective on its own as an option for transportation funding in America,” says Patrick Jones, Executive Director and CEO of IBTTA. “IBTTA’s new fact sheet makes a case for the federal government to explore additional funding options and tolling is certainly one of those vital, new options.”
The release of the fact sheet comes just weeks after the 2013 Report Card for American Infrastructure was released by the American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) giving the nation’s infrastructure an overall grade of D+, primarily due to a deficient funding system.
The release of IBTTA’s fact sheet comes on the heels of President Obama’s newly announced infrastructure plan titled, “Rebuild America Partnership,” released at the end of last month.
“If the President and Congress are seriously looking for an infrastructure plan to help pay for rebuilding our nation’s infrastructure, and at the same time strengthen our economy by putting Americans to work, then tolling should be on the table," says Jones. "Tolling generates more than $12 billion in revenue each year to support more than 5,300 miles of road infrastructure."
In January, IBTTA launched Moving America Forward, a public awareness campaign that highlights the benefits of tolling to policy-makers, the media, and other interested parties.