First Act 89 regional event a rousing success

July 26, 2016

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About 70 transportation supporters attended the first in a series of regional events promoting Act 89 this week in Lancaster.

The attendees heard a panel discussion featuring PennDOT Deputy Secretary Jim Ritzman, Lancaster Chamber CEO Tom Baldrige, High Steel’s Steve Bussanmas, Good Transport Services President Danny Good, Jeff Glisson of South Central Transit Authority and Bob Bini of the Lancaster County Planning Commission.

The event was a collaboration between PHIA and the Chamber and was sponsored by Sable Commercial Realty. PHIA is in the process of organizing additional events later this summer and into the fall, in keeping with its mission to educate the public about transportation issues.

“We were thrilled with the turnout,” said PHIA Managing Director Jason Wagner, who was moderator for the discussion. “The panelists did a terrific job in articulating the benefits of the transportation funding measure, while also expressing concern about the continuing revenue diversions from the Motor License Fund to support State Police operations.”

Look for information about future regional events as details become available.

Read the news coverage of the event by clicking, HERE.




PHIA News Digest – Vol. 85

July 25, 2016

PDSITELOGO2Pennsylvania Turnpike tolls going up in 2017

The Pennsylvania Turnpike Commission is boosting tolls by 6 percent starting January 8, 2017. Tolls have increased every year since 2009 as the commission seeks revenue to pay for a long-term project to reconstruct the Turnpike and handle its debt service.

“The most common toll for a passenger vehicle will increase next year from $1.16 to $1.23 for E-ZPass customers and from $1.80 to $1.95 for cash customers,” the commission stated in a press release Tuesday.

New Bill Works To Install Speed Cameras On Philly’s Deadliest Road

Philadelphia city officials are now trying get speed cameras installed along Roosevelt Boulevard. The road has long been considered one of the deadliest stretches in Philadelphia.

“This will provide needed enforcement and take away the need for our policemen to be worried about enforcing these laws with manpower,” said Representative John Taylor who proposed House Bill 2233.

Pennsylvania lawmakers move to expand, extend use of automated tickets

More red-light cameras could soon be headed to Pennsylvania roadways. A bill on the governor’s desk would expand and extend the state’s red-light camera program.

House lawmakers voted 146-43 on Monday, July 11, to advance a bill to Gov. Tom Wolf that covers traffic signals and the use of automated enforcement in the state. The Senate already approved the bill by a 45-5 vote.

Uber’s Phila. Presence Spurs More Legislation, Litigation

Eighteen months into two-year experimental licenses granted to Uber and Lyft to operate their ride-sharing services in Pennsylvania, the companies’ presence in Philadelphia continues to be a point of contention as regulators and legislators attempt to bridge the gap between city and state laws.

Pennsylvania Department of Transportation Commends Local Officials for Embracing Transit-Service Efficiencies

With its recent vote to consolidate its shared ride public transportation service into the Central Pennsylvania Transportation Authority (CPTA), Perry County became the latest county to pursue efficiencies while preserving service, Pennsylvania Department of Transportation (PennDOT) Secretary Leslie S. Richards said.

CPTA will begin administering the service on October 1, a move that is expected to contain costs and sustain service into the future.



State FY 2016-17 Budget Finalized

July 18, 2016

Provision added to begin phase down and cap of highway funds to the State Police

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Last week, the General Assembly finally adopted the supplemental revenue and tax bills to finalize the state budget process for the 2016-17 fiscal year.  In those bills, a provision was added that will slowly phase down the amount of money going from the Motor License Fund (MLF) to the Pennsylvania State Police for its operations.

Senate leadership Inserted into the fiscal code language that would cap the amount of money diverted in this fiscal year for state police operations at $802 million.  The funding will then decrease-starting in 2017-18’s budget-at an annual rate of 4% over the next 10 years until it reaches a cap of $500 million.  

Good News:
For the first time, we have statutory language to cap and begin phasing down the amount of money going from the highway construction and maintenance program to the State Police.  The General Assembly will be obligated to find any future increases in State Police funding from the General Fund or other revenue streams.

Read more

Events, News

Lancaster Transportation Funding Issue Briefing July 25

July 13, 2016

TRANSFUNDBRIEF (002)PHIA members in the Lancaster area are cordially invited to a Transportation Funding Issue Briefing, sponsored by the Lancaster Chamber of Commerce & Industry July 25 at 10 a.m. at Lancaster Airport.

There is no cost to attend; however, registration is preferred. To register, Click Here or contact Sarah Maser at 717.397.3531.

Finding solutions and opportunities for Lancaster County’s transportation and infrastructure needs continues to be critical to both local business and economic success. PennDOT Deputy Secretary Jim Ritzman will join regional transportation experts in a panel discussion of what’s been done and what’s on the horizon relating to Act 89, as well as transportation policy for the future. The discussion will be moderated by PHIA Managing Director Jason Wagner. Other sponsors are Sable Commercial Realty and Southern Airways Express.

Don’t miss your chance to learn how Lancaster County will benefit from the $2.3 to $2.4 billion funding being allocated over five years. Register today!



PHIA News Digest – Vol. 83

July 11, 2016

PDSITELOGO2Fatal Tesla Crash Draws In Transportation Safety Board

A second federal agency is investigating a fatal May 7 crash in Florida involving a Tesla automobile operating in Autopilot mode that failed to stop when a tractor-trailer turned in front of it. The National Transportation Safety Board, which more typically looks into accidents involving trains, planes, buses and ships, confirmed on Sunday that it had sent a team to investigate the crash, which killed Joshua Brown, an entrepreneur from Ohio.

Uber gets OK to operate in Philadelphia during convention

Uber has struck a deal with Philadelphia to operate legally in the city during the Democratic National Convention and through the summer. The agreement announced Thursday with Uber was prompted by a major disruption in regional rail service. The Southeastern Pennsylvania Transportation Authority took a third of its regional rail car fleet out of service this weekend because of structural defects.

Survey shows public transit is biggest regional transportation concern

A public-private partnership is expected to have recommendations for transportation improvements in the 10-county area by the end of the year, but a crowd-sourcing survey shows a strong interest in one particular area: more public transit. The Regional Transportation Alliance asked 800 groups what transportation changes would make the biggest difference for their clients or members.

Regional police force embroiled in spending debate and facing an uncertain future

Residents and officials from two southern Lancaster County townships met in a sweltering fire hall Thursday to discuss the future of their shared police force — one at the center of a growing local debate over the cost of public safety, fiscal priorities and how much police coverage in a community is enough. Before a large crowd of residents inside Conestoga’s fire hall, supervisors from both Pequea and Conestoga townships said financial realities require some changes to the 12-year-old agreement that laid the groundwork for their joint Southern Regional Police Department (SRPD).