The latest Update about all things MBUFA
March 2018
Quarterly Meeting on March 1 Highlights State Legislation and Research on MBUF
Various aspects of MBUF were the focus of the March 1 Quarterly Meeting in Washington, D.C.

With a packed schedule for the day, administrative reports were scaled back to provide more time for other new updates on various issues to the Membership. A report by Burt Tasaico, Director, Office of Strategic Initiative and Program Support, North Carolina DOT, reported on the legislative hearing held in that state on the issue on February 5. Reports were also given by Adrian Moore, Vice President MBUFA, on other states where he has provided testimony on MBUF recently, also.

Updates on the National Conference Planning and the New Zealand Educational Tour were given by Vice Chair Norma Ortega. Following this information, a proposed research study from TRB was provided by Tom Menzies, Acting Director Studies and Special Program Division. In addition, Adrian Moore provided information on his proposal to NCHRP on the issue.

Following these reports, the group left to hear D.J. Gribbin, Special Assistant to the President, speak at the Road Gang luncheon on President Trumps' infrastructure bill.

Two Capitol Hill meetings with the Senate Environment and Public Works Committee staff and the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee staff highlighted the need for more information on the Section 6020 pilots.

U.S. MBUF Pilots Featured at EU Road User Charging Conference
On March 8, the EU Road User Charging Conference spotlighted what is happening in the United States on the issue with separate presentations from Anthony Buckley, Washington DOT and RUC West, Dr. Patricia Hendren, I-95 Corridor Coalition, and Barbara Rohde, Executive Director of MBUFA. Following these presentations, a panel discussion titled "What does Road Charging development in the USA mean for the world?" followed with the three presenters and James Whitty, D'Artagnan Consulting.

Discussion focused on the fast moving issue in the United States and the impact these pilots might have on the future of road pricing both in the United States and worldwide. An active question and answer session followed the panel discussion.

Steve Morello, D'Artagnan Consulting moderated the second day of the conference.

A 21st Century Trust Fund for a Modernized Infrastructure
THE WASHINGTON TIMES, Mar. 21, 2018
A 21st Century Trust Fund for a Modernized Infrastructure
By Rep. Sam Graves (Mo-06) 

Rep. Sam Graves, Missouri Republican, is Chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Subcommittee on Highways and Transit.

The United States' infrastructure network is quickly falling behind the rest of the world. This is why President Trump has made it a priority to invest and modernize the way we move people, goods and ideas. We must act now while there is a bipartisan desire to accomplish this goal; however, the political realities require us to think differently on how we move forward.

Front and center in this debate is funding. Recently, I chaired a hearing that examined the long-term funding problems that have plagued our federal surface transportation programs. There was a consensus among our witnesses and committee members that addressing transportation funding is the most important issue to solve and that a long-term solution is critical to any modernization effort - a sentiment that is shared broadly among Members of Congress. However, many of the solutions presented to fund a 21st century infrastructure were left over from the 20th century. In my opinion, it's time to look toward the future.

I remain open to any viable option that leads to a modern, sustainable Highway Trust Fund (HTF). In order to do so, we need to acknowledge the problems we face with our current funding sources. Increasing fuel efficiency for passenger and commercial vehicles, along with the continued proliferation of vehicles that don't pay fuel taxes at all, will continue to exacerbate our funding problems. In 2015, the same year we passed the most recent five-year highway bill, federal transportation taxes collected $39 billion to support $52 billion in program commitments. That put Congress in a hole and we once again had to dip into other funding sources to make up the difference. That disparity between revenues and commitments will continue to grow and is unsustainable if we hope to meet our future transportation needs. Dreams of transformative infrastructure projects will remain just dreams.

There is hope. In the last major infrastructure bill, Congress had the foresight to invest and study innovative funding solutions, including actively testing vehicle miles traveled (VMT) concepts. Federal and state governments clearly see the trends and are preparing for the future. While there remain questions about the mechanisms of a new system, it seems clear to me that if we aggressively pursue this option we can put ourselves in the best position to achieve the goal of long-term, sustainable funding for infrastructure projects - something we all want.

According to estimates, a modest VMT user fee on personal and commercial vehicles could raise enough funding to replace the gas tax and exceed our current infrastructure obligations. Those transformative infrastructure projects would then become more of a reality.

Progress is being made. Several states are working, with federal support, to further develop the idea. For example, California is in the process of testing "pay at the pump" technology to allow users to pay the VMT as they go, just as drivers are accustomed to now. Similarly, Oregon has tested a variety of payment methods as part of the most expansive study done to date. Concerns about privacy are being taken seriously and there are plenty of options to address those concerns - it can be as simple as an odometer reading. Innovation in this space is happening rapidly, and with a strong commitment from transportation leaders, a new funding system could be deployed a lot faster than most people acknowledge.

As a senior member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, I am amazed by all the technological advancements being made within our transportation system, but the government needs to keep up. I'm optimistic that technology not only will improve how our infrastructure network functions but can also be harnessed to help solve how we fund it. This is my vision and it's why I am committed to advancing a 21st century solution for a modern, sustainable Highway Trust Fund.


Member News
Washington's Road User Charge Goes Live!
emovis , the mobility solution provider of the world's leading highway management firm, Abertis, is thrilled to announce the start of the Washington Road User Charge (WARUC) Pilot Project. 

For 12 months, 2,000 volunteers will participate in the pilot in order to experience the replacement of the gas tax by a pay-per-mile travelled charge. Drivers will simulate paying for the miles they drive rather than the gallons of fuel they buy. The results of this year-long trial will help shape the state's future transportation funding policy. 

emovis is proud to take part in this initiative that seeks to explore new ways of providing sustainable transportation revenues to maintain critical road infrastructures in the US. 

This exciting project illustrates emovis' long history of Road Usage Charge projects in the US, where the company is involved in Oregon's RUC Pilot ( www.myorego.org ) as well as similar projects in Europe. emovis is committed to continuous innovation in conceiving smart road-based mobility solutions. 

Read the Press Release [PDF]

Gold Sponsor

 
A special thank you to our Gold Sponsor, The Reason Foundation, for their support of the Mileage Based User Fee Alliance.

Thank you.
MBUFA Members

AAA
American Public Transportation Association  
Associated General Contractors of America
Association of Equipment Manufacturers
Azuga
Caltrans
Cambridge Systematics
CDM Smith
CH2M
CofirouteUSA
Conduent 
Coretex
Cubic Transportation Systems, Inc.
ClearRoad, Inc.  
D'Artagnan Consulting
Delaware Department of Transportation
emovis
EROAD
HNTB
Humphrey School of Public Affairs, University of Minnesota
I-95 Corridor Coalition
Illinois Department of Transportation  
Indiana, Illinois, Iowa Foundation for Fair Contracting
Intelligent Mechatronic Systems
IBTTA (International Bridge, Tunnel and Turnpike Association)
Minnesota Department of Transportation
Nevada Department of Transportation 
New Zealand Government to Government Partnerships Ltd.
North Carolina Department of Transportation
Nossaman, LLP
Oregon Department of Transportation
Reason Foundation
Southern California Association of Governments 
Verdeva, Inc.
Washington Department of Transportation
Washington State Transportation Commission
WSP | Parsons Brinckerhoff 
Mileage Based User Fee Alliance (MBUFA) | Email | Website