Connect with us

News

Oregon lawmaker introduces bill to raise gas tax, eventually linking it to inflation

Published

on

The Highway Trust Fund currently is funded by an 18.4 cents per gallon tax on gasoline and 24.4 cents a gallon tax on diesel. The federal fuel tax was last increased in 1993. (FOTOSEARCH)

WASHINGTON — Rep. Earl Blumenauer, D-Ore., Tuesday introduced the Rebuild America Act of 2019, which would incrementally increase the federal gasoline and diesel taxes to invest in America’s infrastructure.

The legislation raises the fuels tax by five cents a year over five years, indexes it to inflation, and establishes Congress’ intention to replace it with a more equitable, stable source of funding within 10 years.

“The gas tax was last raised more than 25 years ago, which means we are paying for our 2019 infrastructure needs with 1993 dollars. That is unacceptable,” Blumenauer said. “Our nation’s infrastructure is falling apart as we fall behind our global competitors. The cost of underinvestment falls especially hard on working families and low-income individuals who can’t afford the cost of a blown tire or lost wages due to congestion. It is past time that we get real about funding our infrastructure needs, we can’t afford inaction any longer.”

The legislation drew immediate praise from Chris Spear, president and CEO of the American Trucking Associations.

“Great credit goes to Earl Blumenauer for proposing a solution to the infrastructure crisis in America,” Spear said. “Truckers see that roads and bridges are deteriorating more each year, and the traffic and congestion that impacts people’s daily lives must be solved. Real problems call for real solutions, and the Rebuild America Act enjoys support from a broad spectrum of organizations — business and labor, as well as families across the country. This legislation would save money, by addressing the nation’s crumbling infrastructure – which costs the average American more than $1,500 per year in repairs and congestion. We thank Rep. Blumenauer for his leadership and hope that Congress works with constructive leaders like him to find a solution to improve our decaying roads and bridges.”

The Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association backs the tax hike.

“OOIDA has always favored equitable raises in fuel taxes as a means to fund America’s highway infrastructure, and will continue to engage policymakers on sustainable solutions for the future that don’t disproportionately impact professional drivers,” said Director of Public Relations Norita Taylor.

NATSO President and CEO Lisa Mullings echoed Spear’s comment.

“We thank Rep. Blumenauer for his leadership in introducing legislation that will increase funding for infrastructure through the fairest and most efficient means possible,” Mullings said. “Construction costs and motor vehicle fuel efficiency have continued to climb, but the federal diesel and gas taxes are the same as they were in 1993 when a gallon of gasoline averaged $1.11 per gallon. The buying power of the federal fuel tax has plummeted.”

Mullings said NATSO has long held that increasing the motor fuels taxes represents the most efficient means of increasing critical infrastructure revenues. NATSO opposes short-sighted proposals such as tolling existing interstates and commercializing rest areas.

The Highway Trust Fund currently is funded by an 18.4 cents per gallon tax on gasoline and 24.4 cents a gallon tax on diesel. The federal fuel tax was last increased in 1993.

Mullings said over the past 25 years, construction and maintenance costs have increased and the fuel tax has remained stagnant, eroding the buying power of the tax by 40 percent.

“It is a fact that we need more funding for roads and bridges. Every day that we fail to invest more in our infrastructure, we pay the price in increased fatal accidents, traffic congestion, and higher cost of goods,” Mullings said. “As America’s aging roads and bridges continue to feel the strain, it is time for our leaders in Washington to do the right thing by raising the nation’s motor fuels taxes and invest in our nation’s global competitiveness.”

Introduction of Blumenauer’s legislation follows only days reports after POLITICO reported that the White House has been reassuring conservative leaders that it has no plans to hike the gas and diesel tax to help fund the massive infrastructure package that President Donald Trump hopes to negotiate with Congress.

Blumenauer, senior member of the Ways and Means Committee and longtime advocate for infrastructure investment, said the U.S. faces the largest infrastructure funding gap in the world.

He said the sector with the greatest shortfall is surface transportation, which the American Society of Civil Engineers estimates needs more than $1.1 trillion of investment by 2025. Since 2010, 35 states with legislatures controlled by both parties have voted to raise their gas taxes. Inaction will cost families $3,400 in annual disposable income by 2025, whereas a 25-cent gas tax increase costs the average driver less than $3.00 a week and contributes nearly $400 billion toward upgrading roads, bridges, and transit systems. Every $1.3 billion in infrastructure investment adds 29,000 construction jobs, yields $2 billion in economic growth, and reduces the federal deficit by $200 million.

 

Continue Reading
Advertisement
2 Comments

2 Comments

  1. Pingback: Today's Pickup: Old Dominion Pledges Disaster Relief Support To Red Cross; Teen Inventors -

  2. Pingback: Today's Pickup: Old Dominion Pledges Disaster Relief Support To Red Cross; Teen Inventors – The Market Wire

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

News

House Appropriations Committee approves FY2020 transportation budget

Published

on

The FY2020 THUD appropriations bill includes $677 million for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration.

WASHINGTON — The House Appropriations Committee Tuesday approved the fiscal year 2020 Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies bill on a vote of 29-21.

The legislation funds the Department of Transportation, the Department of Housing and Urban Development, and other related agencies, including the United States Interagency Council on Homelessness.

In total, the legislation provides $137.1 billion in budgetary resources, an increase of $6 billion above the 2019 enacted level and $17.3 billion above the President’s budget request. The bill includes $75.8 billion in discretionary funding, an increase of $4.7 billion over the 2019 enacted level and $17.3 billion over the President’s 2020 budget request.

“This year’s Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development funding bill represents a positive, inclusive vision for our country,” said House Appropriations Subcommittee on Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Chairman David Price. “It makes forward-looking investments in our housing and transportation infrastructure, while ensuring concerted attention to safety, the needs of the most vulnerable, and resilience.  It will benefit all American communities — urban and rural — and lays the foundation for economic growth and opportunity. I’m thankful for the collaborative effort by all our members to pass the bill through committee and look forward to working together to enact it into law.”

“The Department of Transportation should prioritize safety, and this bill would equip the Department to fund safety upgrades on our roads and rails as well as safety research,” said House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey. “The bill also would provide adequate funding for the federal share of one of the most important transportation projects in our country to advance commuter safety and the economy – the Gateway tunnel between New Jersey and New York. Additionally, robust investments in the bill, such as increases to CDBG, HOME, and Lead and Healthy Homes, would make our communities heathier and safer, and critical language would protect the most vulnerable, including undocumented individuals and their U.S. citizen children and LGBTQ youth, against eviction. With this bill, we have the opportunity to invest in our infrastructure and fundamentally improve the lives of our constituents.”

For the Department of Transportation, the bill provides a total of $86.6 billion in total budgetary resources, $167 million above the 2019 enacted level and $3.7 billion above the President Donald J. Trump’s budget request.

Of this amount, some of the items the bill includes are:

  • $677 million for the Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration, $10 million above the 2019 enacted level and $1 million above the President’s budget request. None of the funds can be used to enforce the use of ELDs by carriers transporting livestock.
  • $48.9 billion for the Federal Highway Administration, $404 million below the 2019 enacted level and $1.7 billion above the President’s budget request.
  • $1.75 billion for discretionary Highway Infrastructure Programs, $1.5 billion below the 2019 enacted level and $1.45 billion above the President’s budget request.
  • $1 billion for the Newsal Highway Traffic Safety Administration, $44 million above the 2019 enacted level and $81 million above the President’s budget request.

 

 

Continue Reading

News

John Christner Trucking’s John Mallory wins TCA safety award

Published

on

John Mallory, recipient of the Truckload Carriers Association Clare C. Casey Award, serves on the American Trucking Associations' Safety Management Council for driver recognition and accident review. (Courtesy: TRUCKLOAD CARRIERS ASSOCIATION)

MEMPHIS, Tenn. — The Truckload Carriers Association has named John Mallory, John Christner Trucking’s director of safety, as the 2019 TCA Safety Professional of the Year and made him recipient of the Clare C. Casey Award.

The award was presented during the TCA’s 38th Annual Safety & Security Division Meeting in Memphis.

John Christner Trucking is located at Sapulpa, Oklahoma.

The award is bestowed upon a trucking industry professional whose actions and achievements have made a profound contribution to enhancing safety on North America’s highways.

“John has an absolute passion for our industry, particularly making it safer,” said John Christner Trucking’s vice president of risk management Shannon Crowley. “He spends much of his free time in pursuit of just that.”

In addition to being employed by John Christner Trucking for 13 years in its safety department, as well as a third-generation professional truck driver for more than two decades, Mallory has an extensive list of accomplishments.

Crowley said Mallory was persistent in obtaining his safety professional credentials once arriving at the company.

“His tenacity is what got him in the door and that same tenacity is what led him to achieving his Certified Director of Safety designation and becoming our director of safety,” Crowley said.

During his career, Mallory has served on the Oklahoma Safety Management Council for 12 years, is a member of the Oklahoma Trucking Association, and serves on the American Trucking Associations’ Safety Management Council for driver recognition and accident review.

He is also a recipient of the John Christner Trucking, Inc.’s Pete Osborne Lifetime Achievement Award in 2017; Oklahoma State Management Council’s Past Chairman Award; and Oklahoma Trucking Association’s 2012 Safety Professional of the year.

He serves as a judge, chairman and as “The Duck” mascot at the Oklahoma Truck Driving Championships.

“John is a great leader in his church as well as other organizations such as Truckers Against Trafficking,” shares his wife, Dianne Mallory, who nominated him for this award. “He is most loved by many for his role as ‘The Duck.'”

Crowley said Mallory is a pillar in his community. He serves on the Tulsa Tech Truck Driving School advisory council, is a member, usher and greeter at Life Church in Owasso and Catoosa, Oklahoma, and is active in the Owasso Police Department K9 unit training canines and officers how to maneuver around and inside 18-wheelers. He also participates in the annual Sapulpa Truck Touch.

On behalf of John Christner Trucking, Mallory has accepted numerous Fleet Safety Awards from TCA, several other industry associations, and both Walmart and Tyson Foods.

“John is always eager to learn, willing to participate, and simply will not be outworked. If there is someone more deserving of this recognition, I haven’t met them,” Crowley said.

Nominees for TCA’s award must exemplify leadership and demonstrate the goals of protecting lives and property in the motor transportation industry while serving their company, industry, and the motoring public. The award is named after Clare Casey, a safety professional who actively served TCA from 1979 until 1989. He was devoted to ensuring that all truckload safety professionals build a strong safety network, and was instrumental in forming the first annual Safety & Security Division meeting in 1982. The first Clare C. Casey Award was presented in 1990, one year after his death.

 

 

 

 

Continue Reading

News

FMCSA accepting applications for military pilot program for 18- to 20-year-olds

Published

on

During the military pilot program, the safety records of the participants will be compared to the records of a control group of drivers. (The Trucker file photo)

WASHINGTON — The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration said Monday it is accepting applications for a pilot program to permit 18- to 20-year-olds who possess the U.S. military equivalent of a commercial driver’s to operate large trucks in interstate commerce.

“This program will help our country’s veterans and reservists transition into good-paying jobs while addressing the shortage of truck drivers in our country,” said Transportation Secretary Elaine Chao.

As directed by Section 5404 of the Fixing America’s Surface Transportation (FAST) Act, the pilot program will allow a limited number of individuals between the ages of 18 and 20 to operate large trucks in interstate commerce — provided they possess the military equivalent of a CDL and are sponsored by a participating trucking company. During the pilot program, which is slated to run for up to three years, the safety records of these drivers will be compared to the records of a control group of drivers.

“We are excited to launch this program to help the brave men and women who serve our country explore employment opportunities in the commercial motor vehicle industry. With the nation’s economy reaching new heights, the trucking industry continues to need drivers and have job openings. We encourage veterans and reservists to apply and to learn more about this exciting new program,” said FMCSA Administrator Raymond Martinez.

The program was revealed by Chao in July 2018 during a news conference in Omaha, Nebraska, which was attended by Sen. Deb Fischer, R-Neb.; and Rep. Don Bacon, R-Neb., himself a military veteran having served in the United States Air Force United States Air Force from 1985 to 2014, reaching the rank of brigadier general.

“This innovative program offers a way for our younger veterans and reservists to transition to the civilian workforce. I personally thank Secretary Chao and officials with the DOT who continue to find ways to utilize the training and talent of the men and women who served in uniform for our country,” Bacon said.

To learn more about this program and how to apply, visit

For complete information on USDOT’s Veteran transitions programs into the civilian careers, visit 

 

 

 

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement
Advertisement

Facebook

Trending