ATA Commends Rep. Blumenauer on Bill to Address Nation's Infrastructure Needs

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ARLINGTON, VA--Dec. 4, 2013: Today, leaders of American Trucking Associations commended Rep. Earl Blumenauer (D-Ore.) for introducing legislation to address the nation's woefully underfunded transportation system.

"American Trucking Associations is very pleased to support Congressman Blumenauer's proposal to increase and index the federal fuel tax," said ATA President and CEO Bill Graves. "Underinvestment in highways is an enormous burden on the trucking industry, raising the cost of moving freight and undermining the reliability of a logistics system that is critical to our nation's competitiveness. The additional investment in highway projects made possible by this new revenue will significantly improve the safety, reliability and efficiency of the trucking industry, to the benefit of all Americans."

Blumenauer's bill – H.R. 3636 – was introduced December 3 and would raise the federal fuel tax by 15 cents as recommended by the Simpson-Bowles National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform and index it to inflation to ensure the fuel tax remains a sustainable source of revenue.

"Our support for raising the fuel tax should clearly demonstrate just how critical good roads are for moving freight, commuters, vacationers and shoppers," said Mary Phillips, ATA senior vice president of legislative affairs. "If the users tell Congress 'we support paying more to support our roads,' we hope Congress will listen."

"For years, the trucking industry has been urging someone to put a fuel tax increase on the table, and Congressman Blumenauer's bill does just that," said ATA Chairman Phil Byrd, president of Bulldog Hiway Express, Charleston, S.C. "The fuel tax is our most efficient and effective way of funding the improvements and repairs our highways and bridges so desperately need."

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