AEM, Industry Partners Call on DOT to Drive Change on VMT User Fee

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7/27/2023

VMT User FeeAs part of the association’s ongoing efforts to find a long-term and sustainable solution to fund the nation’s aging infrastructure system, AEM and infrastructure industry partners unveiled the findings of a study that explores the implementation of a national vehicle-miles traveled (VMT) fee pilot.

In a partnership with the Eno Center for Transportation and the Transportation Construction Coalition, of which AEM is a longstanding member of, industry groups took the initiative to support a private study with the intent to inform, assist, and work parallel to the federal pilot initiative.

The study, “Driving Change: Advice for the National VMT Fee Pilot”, was released this week. The goal of the study is not to recommend a VMT fee structure, but rather to inform the creation of a pilot that is required by law under the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act (IIJA). Under the IIJA, the U.S. Department of Transportation (USDOT) is required to establish a Federal System Funding Alternative Advisory Board by within 90 days of enactment, which was signed into law on November 15, 2021.

The deadline for USDOT to set up the advisory board is long past, upwards of over 525 days.

“Consistent and reliable funding for our nation’s infrastructure is critical to the long-term success of the U.S. equipment manufacturing industry,” said Kip Eideberg, AEM senior vice president, government and industry relations. “As a member of the study’s steering committee, the Association of Equipment Manufacturers calls on the Department of Transportation to immediately establish a national per-mile road user fee pilot program to fully realize the promise of the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act and deliver for all Americans."

The release of the study is particularly timely as U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Sam Graves (R-Mo.) and U.S. Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works Chairman Tom Carper (D-Del.) sent a letter on Monday to Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg on the delay in establishing the national pilot. In the letter, the bipartisan leaders asked the Secretary for a status update on the launch pilot program and emphasized the need for finding alternatives to the gas tax ahead of the next federal surface transportation program reauthorization in 2026.

AEM remains committed to providing industry expertise to ensure that we have the world's leading transportation system. Establishing long-term and equitable infrastructure funding is key to ensuring the American people and economy are adequately served through the safe, efficient, and sustainable movement of people and goods.

For more information about AEM’s Advocacy efforts or to get involved, reach out to AEM’s Advocacy Team.

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