A US Senate proposal to impose a vehicle-miles-traveled fee exclusively on commercial vehicles drew a strong rebuke from the leaders in the trucking industry.
During a May 18 Finance Committee hearing to explore funding solutions for the country’s infrastructure system, Sen. John Cornyn (R-Texas) suggested that lawmakers consider a structure under which a trucks-only transportation fee would be part of a larger program, reports Transport Topics.
“A targeted vehicle-miles-traveled user fee on heavy trucks used in commercial vehicles, along with perhaps some relief on other fees that the trucking industry pays, to me seems like one idea that — while there’s no perfect idea, and there’s also nothing free — we need to come up with something that makes sense,” Cornyn said. “That’s something I appreciate the committee considering.”
The trucking industry strongly opposes a transportation fee that would be exclusive to commercial vehicles, a stance American Trucking Associations President Chris Spear stressed in a statement provided to Transport Topics on May 18.
“It’s really mind boggling that — without talking to Texas truckers — Sen. Cornyn wants to tax the central and most critical link in the supply chain as the economy tries to climb out of the COVID recession,” Spear said. “This will have disastrous consequences for our economy, killing good-paying trucking jobs across the county while hitting consumers hard with higher prices for gas, food, medicine, and everything else they use and depend on their daily lives.”
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