Senate committee to hear federal fuel tax proposal

| 1/29/2008

A Senate committee is scheduled to review a proposal by an appointed transportation commission. The proposal includes an increase in federal fuel taxes by 25 cents to 40 cents per gallon.

The Senate Environment and Public Works Committee is scheduled to conduct a public hearing at 10 a.m. Eastern, Thursday, Jan. 31, concerning the report from the National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission. It was released to Congress on Jan. 15.

A majority of the commissioners are recommending a renewed federal role in the transportation network through fuel taxes and the Highway Trust Fund. A minority of the commission, including commission chairwoman and U.S. Transportation Secretary Mary Peters, prefers more tolling and privatization of the nation’s infrastructure.

The U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure reviewed the proposal last week. Committee Chairman James Oberstar, D-MN, lauded the commission’s proposal for increasing federal investment in transportation.

The Senate committee set to review the proposal is chaired by Sen. Barbara Boxer, D-CA, and the ranking Republican on the committee is Sen. James Inhofe, R-OK.