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Investing in our future success

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Posted by: Bernie Dagenais on Wednesday, March 6, 2013 at 9:00:00 am

Investing in our future success

Like a home, a car or an office building, Pennsylvania’s road, bridge and public transit infrastructure requires regular maintenance to keep the state’s goods and people moving up to speed. Yet, according to a state study, there’s a staggering $3.5 billion annual gap between what the state spends and what is needed. Pushing off the investment to later years will only cost taxpayers more.

With his budget address on Feb. 5, Gov. Tom Corbett outlined a plan to boost funding by lifting a cap on the oil franchise tax, among other measures. It’s impossible to know how much of the additional tax oil companies would pass on to consumers at the pump, since market factors will come into play, but the proposal does rely on a revenue source that is linked to utilization. In other words, those who use roads heavily consume more fuel and would likely pay more than those who don’t.

We invite you to learn more at our March 22 Government Affairs program, which will be co-hosted by Crozer-Keystone Health System, USI Affinity and Penn State Great Valley, to find out more. Pennsylvania’s Secretary of Transportation Barry Schoch will discuss local projects likely to benefit from the investment.

The Main Line Chamber of Commerce, along with a diverse group of statewide advocates, has identified transportation improvements as essential. It’s a factor in our competitiveness as a state and region, and it’s a safety issue for anyone who travels.

While the governor’s plan is a step in the right direction, additional funding sources will be required to make up the gap and legislators are considering options such as higher vehicle registration fees, for example. It is past time for lawmakers to exhibit leadership on this issue.

Click here to view the full March issue.

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