Recently, Department of Transportation Secratary Elaine Chao kicked off Infrastructure Week by outlining her, and the Department’s, vision to improve our roads, bridges and infrastructure as a whole. The whole article below is worth the read, but here are some takeaways owner-operators need to know.
- Nearly a third of the nation’s roads are in need of repair, including major repair in some cases
- Use of private funds for infrastructure repairs is an under-explored option when provisioning improvment projects.
- Streamlining the approval process for such projects by the Federal Government will greatly improve the speed at which repairs or replacements are done as some projects languish for years or even decades due to the current approval process.
- Chao recommends giving States who seek their own funding first before seeking Federal money a higher priority so they are invested in teh process.
- Chao also recommends Federal funding be used to augment existing resources rather than as sole funding
- All these changes are a part of the strategy of the current administration and should be rolled out as soon as possible.
In addition, Executives from Werner Transportation and FedEx shared their views on how to improve shipping and transportation in the U.S.
- Both Werner and FedEx Freight, among others, support raising the Fuel Service Tax as a way to substantially fund all infrastructure projects. They feel this is the best way to ensure funds are available for the intended use without impacting carriers’ bottom lines. It’s unclear how this affects owner-operators though except that all shipping would have to charge the amounts.
- Repairing these roads and bridges will also have a profound impact on vehicle maintenance from the family car on up to large freight carriers effectively lowering the costs for maintenance
- They are also working on ways to address driver shortages, digital convergence, and more.
The whole article is here:
- Taken from an article in Logistics Management online