The Alliance for Toll-Free Interstates (ATFI) is a growing alliance of individuals, businesses and organizations advocating for long-term, sustainable, efficient, equitable, and sensible highway infrastructure funding solutions. ATFI applauds the renewed public emphasis on infrastructure funding coming from Congress, and we are glad to see the House abandoning tolling pilot programs in this proposal. While we fully support efforts to increase the rigor of regulatory review of tolls in the INVEST in America Act, we also want to register our opposition to any policies allowing tolling on existing interstates and believe the proposal’s placing new guardrails on tolls should go further to protect motorists.
Implemented properly, infrastructure funding can provide meaningful employment opportunities to those individuals and communities that need it the most, while also modernizing the transportation system to improve the free flow of people and goods throughout the country. At the same time, poorly conceived infrastructure legislation can be counter-productive, causing unintended impacts that are detrimental to transportation networks, economies and local communities.
Keeping these principles in mind, ATFI strongly supports the repeal of the failed Interstate System Reconstruction and Rehabilitation Pilot Program (ISRRPP) and sunset provision for the Value Pricing Pilot Program. Eliminating these tolling pilots is long overdue. History has shown that, when given full consideration, states recognize what all the affected industries have always known. Tolling interstate lanes that drivers now freely access is not only unpopular, it is an inefficient financing mechanism that is the worst approach available to raising transportation revenue.