SIGMA Says No to More Toll Roads
Association urges members to make their opposition known
WASHINGTON, D.C. -- SIGMA is encouraging its members to make their voices heard in opposition to a new proposal to add more tolls to the U.S. interstate highway system.
According to a message to its members, the national trade association representing fuel marketers and chain retailers said the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee is considering an expansion of tolling on existing interstates in legislation to extend the Highway Trust Fund. Further, the committee may permit states to divert toll revenue to unrelated projects, according to the note.
The Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates (ATFI), of which SIGMA is a member, has prepared a message to urge House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster (R-PA) and the other members of the committee to protect interstates from the burden of new tolls. It reads, in part: "Tolling existing interstates would have serious negative consequences. Businesses would face higher operating expenses and pass those costs on to consumers. Commuters and travelers would face steep cost increases and hourly employees might have to work an extra hour per day just to pay the toll to and from work. Traffic diversion around tolls onto secondary routes is a proven phenomenon, causing congestion, increased accidents, higher road-wear and repair costs for local governments, and slower first-response times."
The Highway Trust Fund is a transportation fund in the United States that receives money from a federal fuel tax of 18.4 cents per gallon on gasoline and 24.4 cents per gallon of diesel fuel and related excise taxes, including highway tolls.
The text of the Committee's bill is expected to be released as early as this week, according to SIGMA, which is urging its members to send an email to Chairman Shuster and the House Transportation Committee.