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Author Topic: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets  (Read 921 times)

Plutonic Panda

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Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« on: March 04, 2019, 07:37:09 PM »

Eh, Iím not really sure how to word the title, but I think I did alright. This thread is meant to track the current proposals as well as updates to them regarding moves by individual states to increase the budgets for their respective DOTís for road and freeway funding. I wouldnít mind mass transit either, but that seems better to be tracked in a separate thread.
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #1 on: March 04, 2019, 07:38:23 PM »

Michigan has a proposal to increase the gas tax by 45 cents raising an additional 2 billion a year or so. Itís phased out to increase over a 9 year period.

https://amp.detroitnews.com/amp/3057483002
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #2 on: March 04, 2019, 07:40:50 PM »

Alabama has a measure to increase theirs by 10 cents a gallon.

http://rebuildalabama.com

Iím generally supportive of these from what I know but Iím not very optimistic. Alabama due to the conservative nature of the state and Michigan because of how high the proposed tax is. Other than Californiaís, would this qualify as one of the largest fuel tax increase proposals in the US?
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froggie

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #3 on: March 04, 2019, 08:28:37 PM »

I know Kentucky has legislation proposing a gas tax and vehicle registration increase, but not sure offhand what the level is.  There is also a forum regular who is very opposed to it on Facebook.
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TheHighwayMan394

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #4 on: March 04, 2019, 08:37:14 PM »

Minnesota's new governor has suggested a gas tax hike, but given the state legislature's makeup it likely won't go anywhere where Republicans in the state senate are eager to use it as a political weapon.
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Big John

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #5 on: March 04, 2019, 08:47:17 PM »

Wisconsin's new governor proposed a 8-cent gas tax increase, but is also unlikely to go anywhere with the opposing party controlling the legislature.
https://www.wpr.org/gov-tony-evers-calls-gas-tax-increase-first-budget
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formulanone

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #6 on: March 04, 2019, 08:47:50 PM »

Alabama has a measure to increase theirs by 10 cents a gallon.

http://rebuildalabama.com

It actually has some bi-partisan support, but whether one infrastructure plan is the same as the others' still needs to hammered out.

Quote
Iím generally supportive of these from what I know but Iím not very optimistic. Alabama due to the conservative nature of the state and Michigan because of how high the proposed tax is. Other than Californiaís, would this qualify as one of the largest fuel tax increase proposals in the US?

If I remember correctly, Florida had a state gas tax increase of 15 cents per gallon effective on January 1, 1994. The day before was the last time I'd ever see 0.999/gal fuel.

Rothman

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #7 on: March 04, 2019, 08:50:44 PM »

NY has just been borrowing more money against income tax revenue (Personal Income Tax or "PIT" Bonds).  The amount borrowed overall since the practice started is quite substantial and has more recently gone towards megaprojects.

(personal opinion emphasized)
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jp the roadgeek

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #8 on: March 04, 2019, 09:15:12 PM »

CT's proposal can pretty much be summed up in 1 word (times 53 locations): T O L L S
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hbelkins

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #9 on: March 05, 2019, 12:20:54 PM »

I know Kentucky has legislation proposing a gas tax and vehicle registration increase, but not sure offhand what the level is.  There is also a forum regular who is very opposed to it on Facebook.

A dime a gallon, plus a huge increase in fees including nearly doubling the annual registration cost for passenger vehicles, a substantial increase in motorcycle registration, and a bunch of other fees that I can't recall offhand. Of course I'm opposed to it. I may be a roadgeek and a DOT employee, but I'm a taxpayer first and foremost.

Michigan has a proposal to increase the gas tax by 45 cents raising an additional 2 billion a year or so. Itís phased out to increase over a 9 year period.

https://amp.detroitnews.com/amp/3057483002

Michigan's proposed increase is more than Kentucky's total. Insanity.
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froggie

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #10 on: March 05, 2019, 01:00:49 PM »

^ As I recall, you were asked, in light of your opposition to the gas tax/registration fee increase, how you would proposed to pay for new transportation infrastructure and improvements to existing infrastructure, given that the need far exceeds available revenue.  I don't recall seeing a response, though.
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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #11 on: March 05, 2019, 01:13:15 PM »

Even with a 45Ę increase, the gas taxes would still be less than most other developed nations.
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TheHighwayMan394

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #12 on: March 05, 2019, 01:28:47 PM »

Thereís also a misconception that user fees are a majority of transportation funding when generally itís about 20-30%. Simply increasing gas taxes is a band aid fix.
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PHLBOS

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #13 on: March 05, 2019, 01:32:54 PM »

Thereís also a misconception that user fees are a majority of transportation funding when generally itís about 20-30%.
Maybe such needs to be fixed first.
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Buck87

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #14 on: March 05, 2019, 01:42:09 PM »

Ohio's new Governor has proposed an 18 cent gas tax increase
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hbelkins

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #15 on: March 05, 2019, 04:02:02 PM »

^ As I recall, you were asked, in light of your opposition to the gas tax/registration fee increase, how you would proposed to pay for new transportation infrastructure and improvements to existing infrastructure, given that the need far exceeds available revenue.  I don't recall seeing a response, though.

No, I hadn't responded to that yet, but my general answer would be prioritization (I don't like the current prioritization model Kentucky's using, as it gives to the "haves" while continuing to ignore the "have nots", and have expressed my opinion about it in the past) and elimination of regulations and bureaucracy. I'm convinced that about 20 percent of the administrative costs KYTC faces comes from federal regulation compliance.
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MNHighwayMan

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #16 on: March 05, 2019, 04:04:55 PM »

No, I hadn't responded to that yet, but my general answer would be prioritization (I don't like the current prioritization model Kentucky's using, as it gives to the "haves" while continuing to ignore the "have nots", and have expressed my opinion about it in the past) and elimination of regulations and bureaucracy. I'm convinced that about 20 percent of the administrative costs KYTC faces comes from federal regulation compliance.

Ah yes, Regulations: The Source of All Evilô
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kphoger

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #17 on: March 05, 2019, 04:08:02 PM »

Ah yes, Regulations: The Source of All Evilô

Regulation being beneficial or necessary does not mean that all regulations are beneficial or necessary.
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MNHighwayMan

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #18 on: March 05, 2019, 04:23:23 PM »

Ah yes, Regulations: The Source of All Evilô
Regulation being beneficial or necessary does not mean that all regulations are beneficial or necessary.

Obviously. But you wouldn't know that from the way certain people speak of them as though they're swear words.
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Rothman

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #19 on: March 05, 2019, 05:10:21 PM »

Ah yes, Regulations: The Source of All Evil
Regulation being beneficial or necessary does not mean that all regulations are beneficial or necessary.

Obviously. But you wouldn't know that from the way certain people speak of them as though they're swear words.
^This.  As much as I suspect some collusion in certain contract bids, I know it would be much, much worse if regulations were relaxed.
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hbelkins

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #20 on: March 06, 2019, 11:22:52 AM »

Ah yes, Regulations: The Source of All Evil
Regulation being beneficial or necessary does not mean that all regulations are beneficial or necessary.

Obviously. But you wouldn't know that from the way certain people speak of them as though they're swear words.
^This.  As much as I suspect some collusion in certain contract bids, I know it would be much, much worse if regulations were relaxed.

OK, here's an example. We're probably all aware of DBE set-asides, which are federal requirements. I'm philosophically opposed to this type of thing, and there's lots of room for abuse. (There was one instance in Kentucky about 20 years ago when a guardrail company with connections to the governor at the time set up a dummy subsidiary with a female CEO to become eligible for DBE contracts.)

Turns out that the KYTC office that certifies DBE participants for highway contracts also certifies them for all state government contracts where DBE set-asides are required. If it's someone hanging drywall for a new dormitory at the University of Kentucky, they've been certified by KYTC. Eliminate the DBE program and the state could probably save $300,000 alone on salaries, plus other administrative costs.

How many environmental hoops, with associated costs, do states have to jump through? Can anyone say with a straight face that significant harm was done because Tennessee built US 23 (now I-26) using its state guidelines and not the federal guidelines?
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MNHighwayMan

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #21 on: March 06, 2019, 11:31:58 AM »

OK, here's an example. We're probably all aware of DBE set-asides, which are federal requirements. I'm philosophically opposed to this type of thing, and there's lots of room for abuse. (There was one instance in Kentucky about 20 years ago when a guardrail company with connections to the governor at the time set up a dummy subsidiary with a female CEO to become eligible for DBE contracts.)

Turns out that the KYTC office that certifies DBE participants for highway contracts also certifies them for all state government contracts where DBE set-asides are required. If it's someone hanging drywall for a new dormitory at the University of Kentucky, they've been certified by KYTC. Eliminate the DBE program and the state could probably save $300,000 alone on salaries, plus other administrative costs.

$300,000 is chump change for state government. This is embodiment of the penny-wise, pound-foolish type of thinking.

And if it's that easy to game the system, de-regulation isn't going to solve anything. In fact, it's likely to make abuses and corruption worse.
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Rothman

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #22 on: March 06, 2019, 12:58:08 PM »

OK, here's an example. We're probably all aware of DBE set-asides, which are federal requirements. I'm philosophically opposed to this type of thing, and there's lots of room for abuse. (There was one instance in Kentucky about 20 years ago when a guardrail company with connections to the governor at the time set up a dummy subsidiary with a female CEO to become eligible for DBE contracts.)

Turns out that the KYTC office that certifies DBE participants for highway contracts also certifies them for all state government contracts where DBE set-asides are required. If it's someone hanging drywall for a new dormitory at the University of Kentucky, they've been certified by KYTC. Eliminate the DBE program and the state could probably save $300,000 alone on salaries, plus other administrative costs.

$300,000 is chump change for state government. This is embodiment of the penny-wise, pound-foolish type of thinking.

And if it's that easy to game the system, de-regulation isn't going to solve anything. In fact, it's likely to make abuses and corruption worse.
Right.  And, in any matter, regulations were imposed at the public's request, one way or another.  To relax DBE and environmental regulations would lead to a political storm that few would want to instigate.
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vdeane

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #23 on: March 06, 2019, 08:34:34 PM »

Take the ADA mandate from the Department of Justice requiring curb ramps be upgraded in resurfacing contracts, for example.  Such work would otherwise be WAY beyond the scope of a typical resurfacing job, and as such is more than doubles the cost if there are a significant number of ramps in the project area (to the point where many municipalities are no longer paving streets with deficient ramps, at least not in election years), making it an unfunded mandate.  On the other hand, the reason this mandate happened is because very little progress was being made in upgrading pedestrian infrastructure even though the ADA law is slightly older than I am.

Meanwhile, in DBE/MBE land, the regulation does lead to a strange incentive - there are DBE/MBE designated contractors who pick up a lot of work being a token subcontractor on a larger job, and they sometimes refuse work because they'd otherwise lose DBE/MBE status - defeating the entire purpose of the regulation in the first place.

IMO what we need is not less regulation, but smarter regulation, so that it has as little imposition as is possible and still do its job, and so loopholes can't be exploited.

(personal opinion)
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Plutonic Panda

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Re: Current Legislative Proposals to Increase State DOT Budgets
« Reply #24 on: March 24, 2019, 10:38:53 PM »

Alabamaís gas tax seems to have passed. Please correct me if Iím wrong.

Illinois has a proposal to bring an additional two billion dollars to spend.
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