DISCUSSION OF REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON HIGHWAY FINANCE

THE STUDY OF THE PERCENT OF TAXES AVAILABLE FOR HIGHWAYS SHOWS THAT IN THE CASE OF REGISTRATION FEES, NEARLY 98% OF THE FUNDS AVAILABLE AFTER DEDUCTING COSTS OF COLLECTION AND ADMINISTRATION SHOULD BE AVAILABLE FOR HIGHWAY PURPOSES AND SIMILARLY NEARLY 90 PERCENT OF THE GASOLINE TAXES. HOWEVER, FEDERAL EXCISE TAXES, PERSONAL PROPERTY TAXES, AND MISCELLANEOUS COUNTY AND LOCAL TAXES CONSTITUTE A TOTAL ALMOST AS MUCH AS GREAT AS THESE. SOUND FINANCE WOULD SEEM TO REQUIRE THE CONFINEMENT OF THE MOTOR VEHICLES REGISTERING POWER WITHIN THE HANDS OF THE STATE AND THE REGISTRATION FEES AND GAS TAXES SHOULD BE RESERVED ENTIRELY TO THE STATE. THIS PRACTICE ELIMINATES THE USE OF THE STATE PROPERTY TAX FOR HIGHWAYS IN A GREAT NUMBER OF STATES. AN ANALYSIS BY THE U.S. BUREAU OF PUBLIC ROADS OF STATE HIGHWAY EXPENDITURES FOR 1925 REVEALS THE FACT THAT 60 PERCENT OF THE FUNDS EXPENDED WERE FOR ROAD AND BRIDGE CONSTRUCTION. SLIGHTLY MORE THAN 18 PERCENT WAS USED FOR MAINTENANCE. DURING THIS PERIOD, SPECIAL TAXES FROM MOTOR VEHICLES ACCOUNTED FOR 43.5 PERCENT OF THE STATE FUNDS. ABOUT A THIRD OF THE LOCAL FUNDS WERE EXPENDED FOR MAINTENANCE WITH THE MOTOR VEHICLE TAXES CONTRIBUTING ABOUT 11 PERCENT OF THE LOCAL HIGHWAY FUNDS. THE DIFFERENCE IN THE THEORY IS CONSIDERED UNDERLYING THE FINANCING OF MAIN STATE SYSTEM ROADS AS AGAINST LOCAL USE ROADS. THE LATTER SERVE THE LAND THROUGH WHICH THEY RUN, THE FORMER RENDERS THE SAME SERVICE TO ADJOINING LAND BUT IN ADDITION SERVE THE CITIES AND OTHER PARTS OF THE NATION. THIS INVOLVES THE QUESTION OF RE-DISTRIBUTION OF MOTOR TAXES BACK TO UNITS SMALLER THAN THE STATE FOR ROAD PURPOSES. FIGURES INDICATE THAT THE TOTAL COST OF RURAL HIGHWAYS IN 1925 WAS COVERED BY ABOUT 30 PERCENT OF SPECIAL MOTOR TAXES, PROVIDING FOR 46 PERCENT OF THE STATE EXPENDITURES AND 11.5 PERCENT OF THE LOCAL DISPERSEMENTS. AS HIGHWAY DISPERSEMENTS ARE STABILIZED, THE BUDGET REQUIREMENTS FOR ROAD PURPOSES SHOULD BE KEPT IN MIND WITH A VIEW TO MAKING THE TAX REQUIREMENTS FAIR AND EQUITABLE TO ALL. CONSIDERATION MUST BE GIVEN TO THE CONSTRUCTING, MAINTAINING AND FINANCING OF PURELY RECREATIONAL HIGHWAYS. THE TREND IN TAXATION IS IN THE DIRECTION OF AN INCREASE IN THE TOTAL RURAL HIGHWAY DISPERSEMENTS WITH THE MOTOR VEHICLE AS THE INSTRUMENT FOR COLLECTION IN AN INCREASING AMOUNT DUE TO THE INCREASING NUMBER OF VEHICLES ON THE ROAD. REFERENCES: REPORT OF COMMITTEE ON HIGHWAY FINANCE, H.R. TRUMBOWER, HIGHWAY RESEARCH BOARD PROCEEDINGS, VOL. 6, PP. 282-317, 1927.

  • Supplemental Notes:
    • Vol 6, pp 318-321
  • Authors:
    • Walker, J E
  • Publication Date: 1927

Media Info

  • Monograph Title: Proceedings of the Sixth Annual Meeting of the Highway Research Board Held at Washington, D.C., December 2-3, 1926
  • Serial:

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00201005
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Jul 2 1971 12:00AM