Building America’s Future applauded Oregon Governor John Kitzhaber for signing into law a new program that will help Oregon become the first state to replace its gas tax with a fee based on the number of miles driven. The innovative mileage-based user charge allows drivers to pay a fee for the number of miles driven, instead of paying the increasingly unsustainable gasoline tax at the pump. As a result, Oregon will be able to better pay for much needed road, bridge and transit upgrades and repairs.
“Governor Kitzhaber and the Oregon legislature have demonstrated real leadership in identifying a fresh way to address the state’s shortfall in transportation funding. Like many other states, Oregon has grown weary waiting for Congress to pass a robust and long-term transportation bill and instead is blazing its own trail,” said former Pennsylvania Governor and Co-Chair of Building America’s Future Ed Rendell. “I am hopeful that Congress is paying close attention to what is happening in the states and will embrace some of these innovative solutions at the federal level.”
Like most other states and the federal government, Oregon is seeing a decrease in collected revenues from static gas taxes as vehicles become more fuel efficient and drivers embrace vehicles that run on little or no gas at all. Oregon joins the wave of other states, including Wyoming, Virginia, Maryland and more, that took decisive action this year to either raise or change the way revenue is collected for transportation investments.