Kentucky’s top transportation official said the state and federal governments are going to have to come up with new ways to pay for road and bridge repairs. Transportation Cabinet Secretary Mike Hancock said taxing motorists on the miles per gallon they drive is not a sustainable funding source. Besides that, migration patterns are changing.
“People from the rural areas in the state are moving to the urban centers where their doctors are, where the things they like to do are and so we’re seeing vehicle travel patterns, all that shift, and at the same time that’s happening the vehicle mile per gallon standards are going up," said Hancock.
He said the state and federal gas taxes that governments have relied on for years are no longer sustainable because motorists are driving fewer miles and getting better mileage.
“We’ve got a situation where all the indicators as we look down the road at our traditional means of funding transportation in America, all their indicators are going in the wrong direction," said Hancock. "In fact, if you look at the Federal Highway Trust Fund as a good indication, the Fund, frankly, has lived beyond its means for the last three and a half to four years at least.”
In fact, Hancock said that highway trust fund, which is generated by the federal gas tax, is expected to drop from 42-billion dollars to zero by 2015.