USDOT - Three of the five transportation modes carried more U.S.-NAFTA trade in September 2013 than in September 2012 as the value of overall U.S. trade with its North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) partners, Canada and Mexico, rose 5.0 percent from year to year, according to the September NAFTA freight data released today by the Bureau of Transportation Statistics (BTS) of the U.S. Department of Transportation.
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Did you know that California’s trucking industry pays 20% of all state transportation revenues on an annual basis? Do you know where truck weight fees are dedicated to? What about the diesel sales tax? The web of revenue streams can be difficult to follow but CTA staff completed a flow chart this year that shows where all of the trucking taxes and fees end up: Trucking Taxes & Fees Flow Chart
You can also read our comprehensive summary of the transportation taxes and fees that affect the trucking industry here: Trucking Taxes & Fees Summary
The nation’s network of highways, roads and bridges isn’t equipped to handle the huge growth in traffic that’s expected in coming years, said Bill Logue, president and chief executive officer of FedEx Freight. Speaking in Houston at the annual conference of the National Industrial Transportation League, Logue said the U.S. transportation infrastructure isn’t even sufficient to handle today’s needs, let alone those of the future. “We must begin to address aging infrastructure across every mode of transportation,” he said.
As expected, yesterday afternoon Transportation CA submitted a request for title and summary for a proposed transportation constitutional amendment to the Attorney General’s office. The proposal, as written today, would assess an annual “California Road Repair Fee” on all vehicles, excluding commercial trucks (over 10,000 lbs.), equal to 1% of each vehicles’ value in ¼% increments phased in over four years. The annual total estimate of revenue raised is estimated to be $2.9 billion per year when the rate reaches 1% in 2018 or nearly $25 billion over the first ten years. As expected, the measure would require a “fair share” (3 cents per gallon) equivalent increase in the diesel tax, which follows our Association’s revenue policy preference in lieu of a vehicle fee based on value. Although submitting this request does not commit Transportation CA to running a campaign, the draft language is the starting point for the transportation funding measure in case the decision is made to move forward in January. Staff will be hosting a conference call this Friday, with the Association’s Infrastructure Task Force to review the details of the proposed initiative. For more information, or to learn more about the Infrastructure Task Force, please contact RJ Cervantes at firstname.lastname@example.org
On Tuesday, U.S. voters approved 91 percent of ballot measures to increase or extend funding for highways, bridges and transit and elected two transportation advocates for governor. Successful ballot measures were approved with 67 percent of the vote, with the approved measures holding a total value of nearly $240 million. Could California be next? Click Here to Read More From Better Roads
On Tuesday, October 29th, 2013 Republicans and Democrats presented a bipartisan report titled "Improving the National's Freight Transportation System." The House Transportation and Infrastucture Committee Chair Bill Shuster (R-PA) and Nick Rahall Jr. (D-WV) collaborated with others in creating a national freight policy. To view the story by Transportation TV, click here.
Last week, the California Green Trade Corridor was presented by the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Maritime Administration to help take traffic off of California’s congested I-580. The corridor will provide shippers with the option of moving cargo through waterways between the Port of Oakland, Stockton and Sacramento. The Department of Transportation dedicated $30 million to the project with an addition of $5 million from local sources. To read more on the story, click here.
Vehicle Miles Traveled Tax Concepts got a lot of attention this past week in the L.A. Times. First, a story written by Evan Halper on the balancing act going on in transportation planning offices with concerns over privacy rights being weighed over the need for increased transportation revenues. Of note in this story is a quote from Hasan Ikhrata, the Executive Director of Transportation CA, that a VMT tax is a “…is a must for our nation.”
Second, an opinion piece from an L.A. Times writer Jon Healey on whether or not a VMT type tax would be better than the current system of fuel taxes. The author correctly notes that “…economy depends on the efficient movement of goods from producers to consumers. Even if you never spend a minute behind the wheel of a car, you still rely on trucks to deliver food to your local grocer, packages to your door, cash to and from retailers, and so on.”
The State Route 99 Madera Rehabilitation Project was completed last week as Caltrans applauded workers on their efficiency to be on time and on budget. Caltrans Director Malcolm Dougherty announced that "This new section of State Route 99 will serve the 65,000 daily commuters, tourists, and truckers who rely on this critical Central Valley corridor." To read more on the project, click here.
Recently, a panel of industry leaders including AASHTO President Michael Lewis, director of the Rhode Island Department of Transportation and AASHTO Board Member and Commonwealth of Virginia Transportation Secretary, Sean Connaughton testified at the Senate Environmental and Public Works Committee. Testimonies involved the topic of the need to invest in America’s infrastructure and preserve federal transportation funding. To get more information, watch the video below.