CEI Comment on Highway Bill Conference Report

CEI transportation policy expert Marc Scribner praised parts of the federal highway bill released today out of a congressional conference committee. Scribner praised parts of the bill that support state user-based funding alternatives to gas taxes, but he was critical of the ongoing policy of bailouts and continuing the federal ban on Interstate tolling.

Marc Scribner, CEI fellow:

We are disappointed that Congress has once again chosen to bail out the Highway Trust Fund with non-user revenues rather than fix the problems that are driving it to insolvency. We do appreciate that Congress appears supportive of returning to user-based transportation funding in the future. This bill provides limited federal funding for state road usage charge pilot projects that can be scaled up to replace obsolete fuel taxes, something CEI has for years strongly urged members of Congress to include in surface transportation reauthorization. However, Congress could have shown greater support for user-based transportation funding by ending the federal prohibition on states tolling their Interstate Highway segments.

For a list of transportation reforms, see CEI’s Agenda for Congress.