PRICING AND FINANCING HIGHWAY SERVICES

IT IS ASSERTED THAT HIGHWAYS COMPETE WITH OTHER ACTIVITIES, INCLUDING OTHER TRANSPORTATION FACILITIES, FOR THE USE OF RESOURCES. IN DETERMINING THE AMOUNT OF HIGHWAY SERVICES TO PROVIDE, ONE SHOULD COMPARE THE VALUE OF THESE SERVICES WITH THE OTHER THINGS THAT COULD BE PROVIDED. HIGHWAY SERVICES ARE SUCH THAT COMPARISONS OF THEIR PRICES-- IF THEY COULD BE PRICED--AND THEIR COSTS--IF RESOURCES ARE OBTAINED FOR PROVIDING SUCH SERVICE UNDER THE SAME TERMS AS IN OTHER USES--COULD TELL IF TOO MUCH OR TOO LITTLE IS BEING PRODUCED. EMPLOYING TOLLS TO SELL HIGHWAY SERVICES DIRECTLY IS ECONOMIC ONLY ON A RATHER SMALL PART OF THE HIGHWAY SYSTEM. FOR THE RAMAINDER, THE SCHEDULE OF FEES ACTS AS A SCHEDULE OF PRICES. THE PRICE TO ANY VEHICLE, IDEALLY, SHOULD BE THE COST INCURRED IN HANDLING THAT VEHICLE. TO PUT HIGHWAY SERVICES ON THE SAME FOOTING AS OTHER COMPETITORS FOR RESOURCES, COSTS SHOULD BE ESTIMATED USING THE SAME INTEREST RATES AND SUCH OTHER COST FACTORS AS PROPERTY TAXES AS THESE OTHER USERS PAY. THUS, SOME DIVERSION OF HIGHWAY REVENUES TO THE GENERAL FUND WOULD BE JUSTIFIED. TO MAKE THIS PRICE SYSTEM FUNCTION EFFECTIVELY, RESEARCH IS NEEDED THAT WILL PROVIDE ESTIMATES OF THE DEMANDS FOR HIGHWAY SERVICES, AND TO KNOW MORE ABOUT COSTS IS NEEDED. TOLL ROAD EXPERIENCE CAN PROVIDE SOME INFORMATION ABOUT DEMAND, AND TOLLS MIGHT BE VARIED SPECIFICALLY FOR THIS PURPOSE. MARKET SURVEYS ALSO COULD BE EMPLOYED. /AUTHOR/

Media Info

Subject/Index Terms

Filing Info

  • Accession Number: 00201557
  • Record Type: Publication
  • Files: TRIS, TRB
  • Created Date: Sep 9 1994 12:00AM