Government Takes Big Picture Approach ~ Hybrid Car Review
Hybrid Car Review: Government Takes Big Picture Approach

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Government Takes Big Picture Approach

Over the past seven months, November 2007 to May 2008, Americans have driven 40.5 billion fewer miles than they did from November 2006 to May 2007.  In May, Americans drover 9.6 billion miles less than they did in May 2007. (Source: FHA Press Release)

High gas prices are driving people from the roads and the Federal Government, or at least the Federal Highway Administration, is unhappy about it.

As Americans drive less and rely increasingly on mass transit, carpooling or other options, the federal Highway Trust Fund receives less revenue from gasoline and diesel sales – 18.4 cents per gallon and 24.4 cents per gallon, respectively.

"Less driving means less money for the Highway Trust Fund," said Acting Federal Highway Administrator Jim Ray. "The status quo cannot and will not work in the 21st century."

Is it me or is this taking a very narrow viewpoint on what's happening?  Is oil dependency a priority?

Before we go too far, I understand this is a problem.  The Fund pays for the upkeep of the infrastructure we depend on and if that number starts decreasing, we may see issues crop in how well the infrastructure is kept up.  But I'm not sure it's exactly a crisis moment, either.  The budget may not be met this year, but the department will have to adjust for next year.

Update: But, of course, they'd rather try juggling the numbers around.

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