Reagan Was Right on How to Fund Infrastructure
Take a second and listen to what Ronald Reagan had to say about the federal fuel user fee — his solution to maintaining America’s roads and bridges and funding infrastructure improvements:
It’s easy to understand why conservative icon President Ronald Reagan twice oversaw increases in the fuel user fee during his presidency. Collected at the wholesale terminal and baked into the price of gasoline and diesel at the retail pump, the overhead costs of the fuel user fee are virtually non-existent.
- 99 cents of every dollar collected goes to the intended purpose of maintaining roads to bridges. Compare that to other methods of infrastructure funding, like tolling — where as much as 35 cents of every dollar is wasted on administrative and overhead costs rather than on road maintenance.
- As a funding mechanism, it is deficit-neutral, generating hundreds of billions of dollars in new revenue without adding a dime to the federal budget deficit. Under a plan proposed by America’s truckers, the Build America Fund would generate $340 billion in new revenue in the first ten years by raising the fuel user fee merely a nickel each year, over four years.
- The apparatus to administer it already exists, which means no new government programs or bloated bureaucracy are required.
It’s time for Americans to reclaim our roads and bridges. We deserve infrastructure fitting of the world’s greatest economy. What it takes is real money — not fake funding. We urge Washington to take action to repair our nation’s roads and bridges.
It’s time to get America moving again.