[Sign Up Now] to Receive Our FREE Daily SCVTV-SCVNews Digest by E-Mail

Inside
Weather
Santa Clarita CA
Clear
Clear
63°F
 
Calendar
Today in
S.C.V. History
April 19
1880 - Pico Oil Spring Mine Section 2 patented by R.F. Baker and Edward F. Beale [story]


Commentary by Jim Madaffer
| Tuesday, Jan 19, 2016

jimmadafferCalifornia drivers are bearing the burden of the state’s transportation funding crisis, with average drivers spending more than $500 a year to repair the wear and tear on their vehicle caused by bad roads.

Gas tax revenues fund most of the state’s road maintenance and repairs, but gas tax revenues are declining as cars become more fuel efficient and as drivers adopt hybrids and electric vehicles. Caltrans estimates the funding gap to be about $5.7 billion per year for the state highway system alone.

Unless we address the transportation funding shortfall immediately, the funding gap will only widen.

Lawmakers are working on a short-term solution to maintain our roadways, and we will have to depend on the gas tax for the immediate future. However, gas tax revenues will continue to fall behind our transportation funding needs over the longer term. We must ultimately find a new transportation funding model that better reflects today’s realities.

One potential solution is the road charge. Under a road charge system, drivers pay by the mile rather than by the gallon.

Whether you drive a gas-guzzling truck or an all-electric sedan, the road charge is the same per mile. Everyone pays his fair share. Several other states are already testing the road charge concept, and we must explore it further in California to determine if it is the right solution for us.

The state has already taken steps to begin exploring a road charge system. Senate Bill 1077, signed into law last year, requires California to study the feasibility of a road charge in a statewide pilot that includes a variety of volunteers from all regions of the state.

roadchargeTo help ensure the parameters of the pilot meet California’s unique needs, SB 1077 also established a Technical Advisory Committee to design the pilot with the benefit of robust public input. The TAC includes experts in telecommunications, data security and privacy, as well as highway users, business and consumer advocates, elected officials and academic researchers.

In 2015, the TAC conducted a robust stakeholder outreach process to seek feedback and input on the design of the pilot. The TAC held 12 public meetings throughout California and invited residents all over the state to attend a meeting or comment through the TAC’s website. Additionally, the TAC invited over 400 stakeholder groups and 130 elected officials to participate in the process, and it consulted a Road Charge Work Group made up of representatives from local government, vehicle manufacturers, fuel distributors and highway users.

After carefully reviewing all of the feedback and input gathered, the TAC released its final recommendations for the design of the pilot in early January. Some of the highlights of those recommendations are that the pilot should:

* Give drivers multiple options to report miles driven;

* Provide non-technological options for those who choose to report their miles manually;

* Protect driver privacy and personal data;

* Measure the impact of a road charge on rural and urban drivers;

* Require no cost to participate.

The pilot is now scheduled to launch this summer and aims to recruit 5,000 participants who reflect the geographic, demographic and socioeconomic diversity of the state.

Because it has been rigorous, this endeavor gave us the opportunity carefully to examine and develop a set of recommendations that reflect the unique nature of our state.

While we know the current gas tax system will not keep pace with state and national needs in the future, we also know the development and implementation of a sustainable long-term solution will take time to deliver. That is why we should all do our part by signing up for the pilot. Together, we can help the state determine if paying by the mile is the right transportation funding solution for California.

For more information, visit www.CaliforniaRoadChargePilot.com.

 

Jim Madaffer, a former San Diego city counciman, is chairman of the Road Charge Technical Advisory Committee and a member of the California Transportation Commission.

Comment On This Story
COMMENT POLICY: We welcome comments from individuals and businesses. All comments are moderated. Comments are subject to rejection if they are vulgar, combative, or in poor taste.
REAL NAMES ONLY: All posters must use their real individual or business name. This applies equally to Twitter account holders who use a nickname.

4 Comments

  1. jimvs says:

    Fascinating. Our roads and highways are fast disintegrating. The State’s highway funds have been raided in the past (by our leaders) and the rate of disintegration has increased. Something must be done!

    So our Legislature and Governor have decided that since they don’t want to risk annoying the campaign-funding interest groups and corporations to increase the fuel tax for light vehicles, they’ll just slide around and come up with a new, cool method of extracting funding from drivers. Queue up the Committees! Get those Silicon Valley boys to put their over-sized brains and wallets to work! Let’s charge ’em by the reported miles driven!

    Except this Road User Charge Pilot thing has already been done by Oregon. They’ve done their initial pilot program, and just to make sure they’re doing another 5,000 driver expanded pilot program that started running in June of 2015.

    And guess what? California has already joined the Western States Road Charge Consortium, established by Oregon and Washington state. I’ll be we get to use their data for free.

    If we want to.

    Don’t believe me? Go to : https://www.oregon.gov/ODOT/HWY/RUFP/docs/RUCPP%20Final%20Report%20-%20May%202014.pdf

    And don’t start up the “California is unique” BS. Yeah it’s special but it can’t be that much more dysfunctional than Oregon can, it?

    No I think your “robust” approach is more about PR/Marketing to the public and getting all of the pigs access to the trough. Oregon’s version contracts with private “account managers” AKA Toll Road companies that have experience at billing drivers directly for their use of the pay-as-you-go lanes. And there are the digital access providers who make the dongles hooked up to the vehicle’s computer to report mileage for that billing.

    And then there’s the Personally Identifiable Information (PII) that will pass through their hands on it’s way to charging us for each mile driven. Lots of value in that info.

    It doesn’t matter how much make-up and lipstick you apply, it’s still a pig. Ask Kermit.

  2. C.R. says:

    Aren’t there more cars on the road everyday? That’s what I have been told.
    How many gallons of petrol were sold in Cal. 10 years ago versus today?

    • Irvin Dawd says:

      Hi C.R.,
      You will be surprised by the answer to your second question.

      The state Board of Equalization keeps track of gasoline sales. In 2006, 15,825,386,719 gallons of gasoline were sold.

      In 2014, 14,702,632,422 were sold, a decrease of 7 percent.
      Figures for 2015 are not complete yet.

      What’s important in the determination of gasoline sales in addition to the number of vehicles on the road is the mileage of the vehicles and the miles they are driven. The former has been increasing due to mandated fuel efficiency improvements, and demographic changes are contributing to a decrease in miles driven (blame it on the millennials).

      Look for yourself:
      http://www.boe.ca.gov/sptaxprog/reports/mvf_10_year_report.pdf

  3. Irvin Dawd says:

    Great piece! I didn’t know that Jim Madaffer, a former San Diego city councilman, is chairman of the Road Charge Technical Advisory Committee and a member of the California Transportation Commission. I strongly agree with everything he writes.

    The release of the details of the pilot are timely considering that the California Transportation Commission has just slashed transportation funding by about $750 million due to reduced gas tax revenue. Worse yet, the gas tax is set to decrease, again, this year.
    http://www.planetizen.com/node/83458/transportation-funding-crisis-looming-california-after-revenues-fall

Leave a Comment


Opinion Section Policy
All opinions and ideas are welcome. Factually inaccurate, libelous, defamatory, profane or hateful statements are not. Your words must be your own. All commentary is subject to editing for legibility. There is no length limit, but the shorter, the better the odds of people reading it. "Local" SCV-related topics are preferred. Send commentary to: LETTERS (at) SCVNEWS.COM. Author's full name, community name, phone number and e-mail address are required. Phone numbers and e-mail addresses are not published except at author's request. Acknowledgment of submission does not guarantee publication.
Read More From...
RECENT COMMENTARY
Monday, Apr 15, 2019
Congress created the job of Medicare Beneficiary Ombudsman to assist people with Medicare with their inquiries, complaints, grievances, appeals, and requests for information.
Thursday, Apr 4, 2019
Welcome All to the Saugus Union School District State of the District Series.
Tuesday, Apr 2, 2019
Some of my favorite memories are of exploring our City’s trails and paseos on bike or foot with my children.
Monday, Apr 1, 2019
In her April 2019 column, Santa Clarita Mayor Marsha McLean invites the community to attend the city's 26th Cowboy Festival the weekend of April 13-14 at Hart Park and nearby venues in Old Town Newhall.
Friday, Mar 15, 2019
Medicare covers a wide variety of shots to help you stay healthy. It also covers numerous tests to help detect diseases early, when they’re in their most treatable stages.
Monday, Mar 4, 2019
This month marks the beginning of the next exciting phase of progress toward the completion of the new Canyon Country Community Center.

Latest Additions to SCVNews.com
1880 - Pico Oil Spring Mine Section 2 patented by R.F. Baker and Edward F. Beale [story]
The College of the Canyons men's basketball program invites boys and girls in third to eighth grade to participate in the 2019 Howard Fisher's Cougar Basketball Camp, with two sessions running this summer.
Registration for Howard Fisher’s 2019 Cougar Basketball Camp Now Open
LOS ANGELES - The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) confirmed one case of measles in a person who flew in and out of Los Angeles International Airport (LAX) on April 3 while infectious.
County Confirms Another Case of Measles in Person Who Flew In & Out of LAX
In a world where children are exposed to many dangers, being informed is the best tool a parent can acquire.
May 8: ‘Growing Together’ Parent Resource Symposium
As part of its long-standing commitment to innovative efforts that support adoption of renewable energy and preserve air and water quality, the Board of Supervisors will present the 11th annual Green Leadership Awards on Tuesday, April 23 at their regularly scheduled meeting.
Supes to Recognize ‘Green Leaders’ at Next Meeting
NORTHRIDGE - The CSUN softball team returns to Matador Diamond this weekend to complete a six-game home stand against Cal Poly.
CSUN Readies for 3-Game Set Against Cal Poly
LOS ANGELES – With measles outbreaks occurring nationally and internationally and the increase in travel during the spring break season, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (Public Health) reminds everyone who has not been immunized against measles to get the measles-mumps-rubella (MMR) immunization
County Issues Public Health Warning as Measles Outbreaks Continue
Kerry Brougher, Director of the Academy Museum of Motion Pictures, announced Thursday the George Lucas Family Foundation has provided a transformative grant in support of the Academy Museum’s educational mission.
Academy Museum Admission Free to Kids Under 18 after Lucas Family Foundation Grant
Close to a dozen people were hurt including four who were taken to the hospital following a four-vehicle pileup in the northbound lanes of Highway 14 near Via Princessa shortly after midnight.
Four-Vehicle Pile Up on State Route 14 Causes Injuries
Former gang-member-turned-scholar, Robert J. Durán, will explore how the label “gang member” is used to criminalize Latino youth along the border between the United States and Mexico, during a lecture at California State University, Northridge on Monday, April 29.
April 29: CSUN Lecture Explores ‘The Gang Paradox’ Along US-Mexico Border
The Gentle Barn is honoring 2019's Year of the Pig with some of the world's most amazing pigs at a public event Sunday, April 21, from 10:00 a.m. - 2:00 p.m.
April 21: Gentle Barn Celebrates Year of the Pig with Piggy Party
LANCASTER – Lancaster jumped out to an early lead and hung on late to beat Inland Empire, 8-5, in the rubber match of a three-game series Wednesday night at The Hangar.
JetHawks Survive Rubber Match
NASA and its International Space Station partners have set a new schedule and new crew assignments that will include the first flight of NASA astronaut Jessica Meir, an extended stay for NASA astronaut Andrew Morgan, and a record-setting flight for NASA astronaut Christina Koch.
NASA Astronaut Projected to Set Record for Longest, Single, Female Spaceflight
CANYON COUNTRY — Miciah Edwards, a junior at Canyon High School will be a Delegate to the Congress of Future Medical Leaders in Lowell, MA, which will take place from June 23 - June 25.
Canyon Honor Student Nominated for Congress of Future Medical Leaders
The North Los Angeles County Transportation Coalition's Board of Directors will hold its regular meeting Monday, April 22, at 1:00 p.m.
April 22: North Los Angeles County Transportation Coalition Regular Meeting
Nearly 2,000 books left behind at the former Albert Einstein Academy, which closed its doors last year due to declining enrollment and financial constraints, found homes at two different schools on two different continents.
Abandoned Einstein Academy Books Donated to Porter Ranch, Ugandan Schools
1945 - Actors Harry & Olive Carey sell Saugus ranch after 29 years; now Tesoro del Valle [story]
Carey Ranch
Composer, sound artist and CalArts alum Ellen Reid (Music MFA 11) on Monday was awarded the Pulitzer Prize for music for "p r i s m," "a bold new operatic work that uses sophisticated vocal writing and striking instrumental timbres to confront difficult subject matter: the effects of sexual and emotional abuse."
CalArts Alum Ellen Reid Wins 2019 Pulitzer Prize for Music
The Santa Clarita Valley Senior Center is proud to announce the opening of the new SCV Senior Center in Canyon Country and its dedication in a public ribbon-cutting ceremony on Wednesday, April 24 at 10 a.m.
April 24: New SCV Senior Center Dedication Day
The Master's University men's golf team fired a collective 13-over in the second round of the Golden State Athletic Conference Championship on Tuesday, moving up two spots and trailing only Ottawa University of Arizona.
Mustang Golf Moves Into Enviable Position at GSAC Championship
College of the Canyons finished a stroke behind tourney winner Santa Barbara City College to see its conference tournament win streak halted at five during the Western State Conference event played at San Dimas Canyon Golf Course on Monday.
Cougars Men’s Golfers Finish Second at WSC No. 8 in San Dimas
College of the Canyons' doubles team of Una Stanisavljevic and Seleste Sakato finished runner-up at the Western State Conference Doubles Championships after a tough loss in Friday's championship match.
Lady Cougars Doubles Duo Finishes Runner-Up At WSC Championships
With a goal of lowering prescription drug costs, Los Angeles County officials said Wednesday they will join a new state program that allows the county to bargain directly with drug companies.
LA County Joins California Bulk Drug-Buying Program
The SCV Man & Woman of the Year winners will be announced at the 54th annual Recognition Dinner at the Hyatt Regency Valencia on Friday, May 3, starting at 6 p.m.
May 3: SCV Man & Woman of the Year Awards Dinner
A tentative agreement between Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital and its registered nurses has been made after an emergency meeting was held Tuesday night.
Henry Mayo Newhall Hospital, Nurses Reach Tentative Agreement
The city of Santa Clarita has been recognized by the California Internship & Work Experience Association as a 2019 Employer of the Year, an award bestowed upon employers that model exemplary internship and work experience programs.
Santa Clarita Wins Award for College Intern, Work Experience Programs
The Santa Clarita Valley Chamber of Commerce will host its first "Pop-Up Biz Expo," a new concept to help SCV businesses promote their products and services, on the California Institute of the Arts campus in Valencia on Wednesday, June 19, from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.
June 19: SCV Chamber to Open First Pop-Up Expo for SCV Businesses
During a recent four-day trip to Seattle, 12 video production students from Castaic Middle School were part of a group that garnered four awards at the 2019 Student Television Network Awards.
Castaic Middle School Video Production Students Win National Awards
Los Angeles County Supervisors Janice Hahn and Sheila Kuehl on Tuesday recommended creating a permanent Youth Advisory Body to give young people a voice in the creation and implementation of county policy matters that impact them.
Supes Propose LA County Youth Advisory Body
The JetHawks were unable to extend their winning streak to seven Monday, losing to Inland Empire, 7-1, at The Hangar.
JetHawks’ Win Streak Comes to an End Tuesday
The California Air Resources Board Wednesday announced a settlement with Fiat Powertrain Technologies Industrial S.p.A for emissions-related violations affecting nearly 2,000 on-road and off-road diesel engines.
Fiat Pays California $6.4M Penalty for Diesel Emissions Violations
Just before a Whittier man was sentenced to more than 22 years in prison for three counts of vehicular manslaughter, the father of one of those victims had a chance to describe the three years of pain he has endured.
Grieving Father Forgives Man Who KIlled His Daughter
The Boys & Girls Club of Santa Clarita Valley will host its 48th annual auction and fundraiser on Saturday, June 1, at the Hyatt Regency Valencia, with doors opening at 5 p.m.
June 1: 48th Annual Auction to Benefit Boys & Girls Club SCV
Santa Clarita was ranked the ninth-safest city in California by an online firm that crunched the latest crime statistics compiled by the FBI.
Santa Clarita Named 9th Safest City in California
With a May 1 deadline to submit state budget revisions rapidly approaching, California Governor Gavin Newsom promised Southern California officials and health service providers Tuesday that the state could financially back their efforts to tackle homelessness.
Newsom Vows Relief for Homeless Californians
The California High-Speed Rail Authority indicated Tuesday it is likely to recommend approval of interim rail service connecting Central Valley cities before expanding the service to Los Angeles and San Francisco as funding becomes available.
California Bullet-Train Agency Eyes Central Valley-Only Service, for Now