PHIA News Digest – Vol. 7, No. 13

March 28, 2022

Harrisburg’s South Bridge was built to solve traffic problems. Tolls might undo that.

The South Bridge opened in 1960 to ease traffic on Harrisburg streets so they wouldn’t become parking lots. The proposed tolling of this Interstate 83 bridge, some say, could bring back that gridlock.

National study calls for more funding beyond the federal infrastructure bill

A national study has confirmed what Pennsylvania officials have been saying for months: The Biden administration’s trillion-dollar infrastructure plan is a nice boost but isn’t nearly enough to address all of the nation’s transportation needs.

Pa. gas tax cut could issue $650M bond to cover shortfall

States are temporarily cutting gas taxes in response to inflation and rising oil prices, and Pennsylvania might follow suit.

PennDOT and Gov. Wolf urging solutions other than cutting state gas tax

Two new bills are promising to lower the cost a bit following suit with other nearby states, but what about the state agencies that rely on this tax?

Some experts want Pa. lawmakers to rethink temporary gas tax cuts

There’s one clear downside with cutting gas taxes in particular and not replacing the money, even if it’s just for a little while: Pennsylvania ends up with less cash to use for road and bridge repairs, and even the state police.

“Fueling Debate” Part I: Breaking down PA’s gas tax

Pennsylvania is expected to generate over $3.5 billion dollars in gas tax revenue by the end of the current fiscal year. But is the revenue going where it should?

“Fueling Debate” Part II: Alternative transportation revenue

Last year, Gov. Tom Wolf established the Transportation Revenue Options Commission to explore alternative transportation revenue options. The commission came up with several options to either supplement or entirely replace the gas tax, but some of those options might hurt your wallet and the state’s economy.

PennDOT moving ahead with various infrastructure projects

PennDOT has a list with dozens of potential projects across the state that can happen because of the $4 billion dollars for highways and $1.6 billion for bridge repair.

Cumberland County, West Shore towns file suit to block PennDOT’s South Bridge tolling plan

Elected officials from six West Shore communities and Cumberland County are trying to erect legal roadblocks to a tolling plan envisioned for the South Bridge carrying Interstate 83 over the Susquehanna River. The municipal coalition has filed suit in Commonwealth Court, seeking preliminary and permanent injunctions to stop the plan in its tracks.

The tax holiday is a bait-and-switch as a fiscal crisis looms

Just as inflation reached a 40-year high, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine deepens the high food and gas price shock to U.S. consumers—to Pennsylvanians. As mid-term elections near, big-spending politicians now scramble to provide the illusion of relief and ward off political disaster.


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