IBTTA Applauds Competitive Enterprise Institute Report Calling on Lawmakers to Remove Restrictions on Interstate Tolling

August 2019

WASHINGTON, DC… Patrick D. Jones, Executive Director and CEO of the International Bridge, Tunnel andTurnpike Association (IBTTA), the worldwide association representing toll facility owners and operators and the businesses that serve them, released the following statement applauding the Competitive Enterprise Institute’s (CEI) new report, Transforming Surface Transportation Reauthorization: A 21stCentury Approach to Address America’s Greatest Infrastructure Challenge:

“The Competitive Enterprise Institute’s report calling on Congress to embrace alternative sources of transportation funding like tolling and a mileage-based user fee is a welcome addition to the growing chorus of voices speaking out in support of new ways to invest and fund our nation’s infrastructure.

The Highway Trust Fund is insolvent, and Congress continues to use billions of dollars in general purpose funds to keep it limping along. The gas tax is unsustainable and continues to fall well short in paying for our roads, bridges and tunnels. Our underfunding and under investment in our nation’s infrastructure is showing in degraded roadways, deteriorating bridges on the 60-year-old interstate system and other highways across America. If we continue to do nothing, or do not properly invest in our infrastructure, the U.S. economy and drivers will continue to suffer, slipping further behind as a world leader.

CEI’s new report is exactly correct in calling out the status quo as unsustainable. Congress should lead by allowing states greater flexibility to make the best decisions to meet their needs whether removing restrictions on interstate tolling or embracing alternative funding solutions.”

The Competitive Enterprise Institute’s report says, “Since 2008, Congress has bailed out the federal Highway Trust Fund to the tune of $140 billion as motor fuel tax receipts have stagnated while spending has continued to increase. In addition to the revenue-outlay imbalance at the federal level, outdated federal restrictions on highway tolling have denied to states opportunities to tailor transportation policy and funding to fit their residents’ needs. This status quo is not sustainable.”

In addition to other measures, CEI’s new report calls on Congress to take steps IBTTA has promoted for many years, including:

•Establishing a mileage-based user fee pilot program to examine a shift away from motor fuel user taxes; and

•Eliminating federal prohibitions on states tolling their own Interstate segments.

The International Bridge, Tunnel andTurnpike Association (IBTTA) is the worldwide association for the owners and operators of toll facilities and the businesses that serve them. Founded in 1932, IBTTA has members in more than 20 countries on six continents. Through advocacy, thought leadership and education, members are implementing state-of-the-art, innovative user-based transportation financing solutions to address the critical infrastructure challenges of the 21st Century. For more information, please visit www.ibtta.org or join us on Twitter @IBTTAor #TollRoads.