DOT chief wrapping up infrastructure tour in DC

DOT chief wrapping up infrastructure tour in DC
© Anne Wernikoff

Transportation Secretary Anthony FoxxAnthony Renard FoxxBig Dem names show little interest in Senate Lyft sues New York over new driver minimum pay law Lyft confidentially files for IPO MORE is wrapping up his bus tour pushing for the Obama administration’s $478 billion transportation bill in Washington, D.C., on Friday. 

Foxx is scheduled to appear at Washington’s Union Station with D.C. Mayor Muriel Bowser (D) and Amtrak CEO Joe Boardman. 

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The D.C. appearance is the conclusion of a week-long bus tour that took Foxx from Florida to Virginia as he pushed for an administration proposal that calls for spending nearly $80 billion per year on road and transit projects over the next six years.

The figure is a large increase over the approximately $50 billion per year that is currently being spent by the federal government on infrastructure. 

Lawmakers have begun considering a new transportation bill with the current measure set to expire in May. They have struggled to come up with a way to pay for the infrastructure spending beyond revenue that is collected from the federal gas tax, however, which is at 18.4 cents per gallon. 

The gas tax has been the traditional source of transportation funding for decades, but it has not been increased since 1993 and has struggled in recent years to keep pace with rising construction costs as cars have become more fuel efficient. 

The gas tax brings in approximately $34 billion at its current rate, resulting in a nearly $16 billion annual shortfall in transportation funding before an increase like the administration’s proposal is even considered. 

Transportation advocates have pushed for an increase in the gas tax to boost infrastructure funding, but the Obama administration has said it would prefer using revenue from taxing overseas corporate profits to pay for new construction projects.