An Act To Modernize Road User Fees
CONCEPT DRAFT SUMMARY
This bill is a concept draft pursuant to Joint Rule 208.
This bill proposes to modernize current state road user fee funding mechanisms to promote equity and sustainability and to yield the predictable funding levels needed to support a safe and reliable highway and bridge system that supports economic opportunity.
In order to attain these goals, the bill proposes to require some or all of the following:
1. A review and revision, if necessary, of the funding levels, including any anticipated shortfalls, necessary to achieve the highway and bridge capital goals enumerated in the Maine Revised Statutes, Title 23, section 73, subsection 7, paragraphs A to D;
2. A mechanism to address the erosion of Highway Fund receipts that is caused in part by higher automobile fuel efficiency such as registration fee surcharges on electric or hybrid cars or the establishment of a voluntary vehicle miles traveled program that allows a user to self-report the miles traveled and pay a tax based on those miles;
3. A method of placing a more equitable share of the costs of the highway system on nonresidents such as reducing baseline fuel tax rates and adding a seasonal gasoline tax surcharge or imposing seasonal electronic tolling;
4. Reducing baseline fuel tax rates and adding a wholesale tax component;
5. Fuel tax surcharges that are tied to fuel prices or federal fuel taxes and that would be reduced or eliminated as fuel prices or the federal tax increases; and
6. The dedication of a portion of sales tax receipts from sales of transportation-related products, such as vehicles and tires, for transportation needs.