In response to numerous state
and federal efforts to pursue tolling and highway infrastructure
privatization as the answer to the nation?s transportation funding
shortfalls, ATRI?s research is among the first to examine highway
funding from a system user perspective. While collection costs for
fuel taxes range from 3 to less than 1 percent of revenue, ATRI has
documented toll collection revenue-to-cost ratios exceeding 21
percent. ?Every state legislator needs to understand that tolling
is not an efficient way to improve transportation,? said George
Billows, Executive Director of the Illinois Trucking Association.
The study also highlights the
threat to rural America resulting from the push toward tolling and
privatization. Rural corridors lack the necessary population
densities and financial base to attract private sector investors
focused on profit. Yet these same corridors are critical links in
the U.S. supply chain, providing essential commodities and
connectivity between states and metropolitan areas. The research
proposes that the U.S. DOT?s mission of providing a seamless
transportation network requires holistic funding strategies that
ensure continued support of rural corridors rather than focusing
solely on high traffic metropolitan routes.
?Pursuing funding strategies
that knowingly fragment our national transportation system is simply
bad business. Our products have their genesis in this country?s
heartland and we rely on those same connectors to deliver goods to
American consumers,? said Jack Shawn, Senior Operations Manager for
As the most efficient and
equitable method for raising revenue, the motor fuel tax is
recommended as the most effective strategy for increasing
transportation funding for the short- to mid- term. To meet the
increasing needs, ATRI?s research recommends increasing the fuel tax
in conjunction with elimination of numerous costly fuel tax
exemptions and diversions from the highway trust fund. In total,
the study identifies an additional $10 billion to $38 billion which
could be raised in annual revenues for highway infrastructure.
Pat Quinn, co-Chairman of U.S.
Xpress Enterprises said, "ATRI's study identifies many cogent issues
which require public dialogue as we chart the future of surface
transportation. I look forward to sharing the findings with my
fellow commissioners." Quinn serves as a member of the National
Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission.
A copy of the study?s Executive
Summary is available online at
where a copy of the full report can also be requested.
ATRI is the trucking industry?s
501(c)(3) not-for-profit research organization. It is engaged in
critical research relating to freight transportation?s essential
role in maintaining a safe, secure and efficient transportation