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Legislation introduced to find alternative Highway Trust Fund revenues

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Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-OR-03) has introduced H.R.383, the Road User Charge Advancement Act of 2021, legislation that would build on the Surface Transportation Systems Funding Alternatives (STSFA) program included in the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act. The bill was originally introduced during the last Congress and included in the Moving Forward Act. If it secures passage this Congress, it would nearly double current funding to $35 million annually for STSFA.

The STSFA program incentivizes states to find alternative funding solutions for the Highway Trust Fund (HTF), as a reliance on revenues from the current gas tax becomes a less feasible method of keeping the HTF solvent. The federal gas tax has lost nearly 71% of its purchasing power since its most recent rate increase in 1993 due to inflation and the increase in fuel-efficient and alternative-fuel vehicles.  Failure to develop new sources of revenue could see the HTF experience a $190 billion shortfall in the next decade.

House resolution honors ATSSA’s 50th anniversary

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Three members of the House of Representatives introduced a resolution this week recognizing the 50th anniversary of the American Traffic Safety Services Association. The bi-partisan resolution was initiated by Rep. Rob Wittman, a Republican representing Virginia’s 1st District, and Road Safety Caucus Chairs Bruce Westerman,  a Republican representing Arkansas’ 4th District, and Chris Pappas, a Democrat representing New Hampshire’s 1st District.