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Highway and general road funding for construction and maintenance is a big problem. As your essay demonstrates the analysis of how much is needed is complicated.

A fair analysis would not only look at VMT but the damage to the roads due to the weight of vehicles. The increase in the weight of a vehicle damages the road by a factor of 4. That means that a truck that weighs twice as much does not twice the damage to the road but 16 times the damage.

What I'm getting at is that the formula should be reworked to include both VMT and weight. When the costs are apportioned, we will might/probably find that owners of cars are paying too much and truckers are paying too little.

If shippers had to pay the true costs for the roads, they may find that using alternative means (ie. railroads) to be more cost effective.

Alas, this issue will be demagogued to death and nothing will happen. The GOP will convince the general population that sidewalks are communist plot hatched in the basement of the Kremlin and unfunded sprawl (the American Way) is a right guaranteed by the constitution.

by tom on Sep 7, 2011 11:40 am • linkreport

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