The gas tax getting a raise was an idea everyone was talking about this week. From USA TODAY’s editorial urging lawmakers to set aside gimmicks in favor of sustainable funding solutions to a bipartisan proposal to raise the gas tax 12 cents.
In an unprecedented bipartisan effort, Sen. Bob Corker (R-Tenn.) and Sen. Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) proposed the idea to ensure funding that can afford current and future infrastructure costs, as it would tie the user fee to inflation.
Sen. Wyden of Oregon also announced progress on his efforts to fix the Highway Trust Fund. His $10 billion plan would offer a six-month extension to provide time to pass a long-term bill and authorize the spending. As states are starting to put projects on hold because of the uncertainty, this will at least potentially ensure some of those projects could continue while a decision is met. Many states, including Oregon and Mississippi, voice concerns of the impending loss of federal funds. The sharing of ideas and demonstration of bipartisanship are promising indications that the states will continue to receive federal dollars.
Every day, news stories of the poor condition of our nation’s infrastructure appear. But in the problem lies an opportunity to do better and build a stronger economy. The key is finding long-term sustainable funding solutions, whether through the gas tax or another option, it’s time to #FixtheTrustFund.