Transportation Construction Coalition Statement on Graves-Norton Highway Trust Fund Letter
(WASHINGTON)—The Transportation Construction Coalition commends the 253 bipartisan members of the House of Representative who joined together to advocate for a long-term solution to the Highway Trust Fund’s structural revenue deficit.
119 Republicans and 134 Democrats—a majority of each party’s membership in the chamber—signed a June 12 letter, led by House Highways & Transit Subcommittee Chairman Sam Graves (R-Mo.) and Ranking Member Eleanor Holmes-Norton (D-D.C.), to House Ways and Means Committee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) and Ranking Member Richard Neal (D-Mass.) calling for a trust fund fix as part of legislation to reform the U.S. tax code.
Since 2008, over $140 billion in general fund transfers and budget gimmicks have been needed to preserve federal surface transportation investments. The trust fund’s permanent revenue shortfall continues to grow. In fact, the $70 billion transferred into the trust fund as part of the 2015 surface transportation program law will be liquidated in FY 2020. Waiting until that point to address the trust fund’s revenue shortfall would result in a nearly $18 billion average annual shortfall between existing revenue and the amount needed to prevent cuts in highway and public transportation spending.
The Graves Norton letter notes: “Over the past 30 years, all Highway Trust Fund (HTF) revenue enhancements have been included in larger tax and deficit reduction packages. Any HTF solution should entail a long-term, dedicated, user-based revenue stream that can support the transportation infrastructure investment supported by President Trump and members of Congress.”
The letter makes crystal clear that members of both parties are seeking a break from the budget gimmicks and general fund transfers of the past. It is also a welcome contrast to the Trump administration’s budget proposal to ignore the Highway Trust Fund’s fiscal situation and arbitrarily constrain spending—an approach that would result in $100 billion in highway and public transportation investment cuts through FY 2027.
View the letter.
Established in 1996 and co-chaired by the American Road & Transportation Builders Association (ARTBA) and the Associated General Contractors of America (AGC), the 31 associations and labor unions that make up the TCC have a direct market interest in the federal transportation program. TCC members include:
American Road & Transportation Builders Association (co-chair); Associated General Contractors of America (co-chair); American Coal Ash Association; American Concrete Pavement Association; American Concrete Pipe Association; American Council of Engineering Companies; American Subcontractors Association; American Iron and Steel Institute; American Society of Civil Engineers; American Traffic Safety Services Association; Asphalt Emulsion Manufacturers Association; Asphalt Recycling & Reclaiming Association; Associated Equipment Distributors; Association of Equipment Manufacturers; Concrete Reinforcing Steel Institute; International Slurry Surfacing Association; International Association of Bridge, Structural, Ornamental and Reinforcing Iron Workers; International Union of Operating Engineers; Laborers-Employers Cooperation and Education Trust; Laborers’ International Union of North America; National Asphalt Pavement Association; National Association of Surety Bond Producers; National Electrical Contractors Association; National Ready Mixed Concrete Association; National Steel Bridge Alliance; National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association; National Utility Contractors Association; Portland Cement Association; Precast/Prestressed Concrete Institute; The Road Information Program; and United Brotherhood of Carpenters and Joiners of America.