Get the Feds out of Transportation Funding

While Governor Rendell is calling on more money from the federal government for bridge repair (while refusing to address over-spending, which his own Transportation Funding Commission said should occur before any new spending), the Heritage Foundation advises getting the federal government out of the transportation funding scheme.

In a Backgrouner, Ronald Utt writes:

Under these circumstances, a much more productive approach would be to ‘turn back’ the federal highway program to the states. Under current law, the federal Highway Trust Fund is financed by a federal fuel tax of 18.3 cents per gallon of gasoline and 24.3 cents per gallon of diesel fuel. The revenue from this tax is returned to the states according to a flawed formula that creates many winners and los­ers among the states, with Southern and Great Lakes states paying much more than they receive while New England and most Middle Atlantic states receive more than they pay. Furthermore, the fed­eral money comes with many mandates and micro­managing directives that severely limit states’ abilities to meet their transportation priorities.