NZ Truck & Driver News

 
March 2018 Trump v truckers

March 2018 Trump v truckers

NZ Truck & Driver News

 March 2018   
United States president Donald Trump's policy moves that would, on the surface, seem likely to find trucking industry support, are having the reverse effect.

Trump's State of the Union call for Congress to pass a bi-partisan bill generating at least $US1.5trillion to invest in infrastructure, for instance, has been met with suspicion.

That's because Trump didn't say how the big spend would be funded – and a leaked draft document indicated that the president favours allowing states to impose tolls on interstate highways.

The American Trucking Associations, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA), the Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates and NATSO, which represents truck-stop operators, came out in opposition to reversing a current federal ban on tolling existing interstates and to expanding tolling in general.

ATA and the powerful US Chamber of Commerce have lobbied against expanding tolling – preferring instead the raising of ...

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United States president Donald Trump's policy moves that would, on the surface, seem likely to find trucking industry support, are having the reverse effect.

Trump's State of the Union call for Congress to pass a bi-partisan bill generating at least $US1.5trillion to invest in infrastructure, for instance, has been met with suspicion.

That's because Trump didn't say how the big spend would be funded – and a leaked draft document indicated that the president favours allowing states to impose tolls on interstate highways.

The American Trucking Associations, the Owner-Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA), the Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates and NATSO, which represents truck-stop operators, came out in opposition to reversing a current federal ban on tolling existing interstates and to expanding tolling in general.

ATA and the powerful US Chamber of Commerce have lobbied against expanding tolling – preferring instead the raising of the federal fuel tax to pay for highway infrastructure spending.

ATA president and CEO Chris Spear called for Congress to produce with the administration "an infrastructure package that raises real revenue to meet the enormity of this challenge.

"Roads are not a partisan issue – they're driven on by Republicans and Democrats alike. As both sides of Capitol Hill know, modernising our infrastructure will require a substantial investment – actual, real revenue. America cannot be rebuilt with funding gimmicks and finance schemes."

Spear added that ATA is "looking forward to working with Congress and the administration and educating the public on why a fuel user fee is the most cost-effective and conservative answer to fixing our deteriorating roads and bridges."

Spear says that the ATA's Build America Fund, which he says is "efficient, conservative and viable…," would generate $US340bn "of real money in the first 10 years."

The OOIDA said that, while it welcomed Trump's call for $1.5trillion in infrastructure spending, "professional truckers are concerned by the administration's reliance on private investment to achieve this level of funding."

Increased tolling, said acting president Todd Spencer, is not the way to pay for it: "If elected officials think a fuel tax increase would be unpopular, wait until Americans encounter more and higher tolling."


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