Transportation User Charge Proposals in the President’s Budget, 1941 to Present

All federal budgets from FY 1923-onward are archived at

https://fraser.stlouisfed.org/title/budget-united-states-government?browse=B#54

Franklin D. Roosevelt, Seventh (FY 1941) Budget Message:

Financing the maintenance cost of certain services.–I have always believed that many facilities made available to our citizens by the Government should be paid for, at least in part, by those who use them. For example, I believe that in the case of parks, national forests, historic monuments, and so forth, small fees, as low as 5 or 10 cents per person, should be charted to those who enjoy them. A start on this policy has been made. In such a way a substantial part of the annual cost of maintenance of roads, trails, and grounds in forests and parks will come back to the Treasury and reduce the annual cost of government. Another example is the $50,000,000 the Government spends annually in the maintenance of dredged channels, buoys, lighthouses, lifesaving stations, and so forth. It would seem reasonable that some portion of these annual expenditures should come back in the form of small fees from the users of our lakes, channels, harbors, and coasts. If the Congress would make a special study of the further possibilities along these lines I will be glad to make available for such a study material from various departments.” (pp. xiii-xiv)

Harry S. Truman, Second (FY 1948) Budget Message:

“I also recommend that Congress reconsider the extent to which fees should be charged for services rendered by the Federal Government. While it is not sound public policy to charge for all services of the Federal Government on a full cost basis, and many services should be provided free, the Government should receive adequate compensation for certain services primarily of direct benefit to limited groups. For example, I believe that a reasonable share of the cost to the Federal Government for providing specialized transportation facilities, such as airways, should be recovered.” (p. M12)

Harry S. Truman, Seventh (FY 1953) Budget Message:

“The airline industry as a whole has now reached a stage of development where it needs less Government support than in former years, and this subsidy should be curtailed. As an important further step in the direction of financial independence, the industry should begin in the near future to bear its fair share of the cost of federally provided facilities through a system of airway user charges” (p. M34)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, First (FY 1955) Budget Message:

“Efficient transportation and communication services are essential to the national economy and the national security. At my request, an intensive reappraisal of Federal responsibilities is underway both by the regular departments and agencies and by special commissions. The general principles guiding this reappraisal are that the national interest will usually be served best by a privately owned and operated industry, which is supported by a minimum of Federal funds or Federal basic facilities and services operated at the lowest feasible cost and financed, where possible, by charges levied on the users of the services.” (p. M86)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Second (FY 1956) Budget Message:

“For the coming year, I am recommending that we start a 10-year program to modernize the interstate highway system in cooperation with State and local governments. I am also proposing that we step up aeronautical research, expand air navigation facilities, and help industry build more ships. These activities are important for our national security as well as for our growing economy. I firmly believe that as large a proportion as possible of the expenditures of the Gov­ernment should be borne by those directly benefiting therefrom. The user charge principle should be further extended. I have recom­mended to the Congress that postal rates be increased to make the postal system self-supporting in the near future. With the enactment of this legislation, total net expenditures for commerce and manpower in the fiscal year 1956 are expected to be 2.2 billion dollars, 364 million dollars below 1955.” (p. M9)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Third (FY 1957) Budget Message:

“Many services performed and privileges granted by the Govern­ment in the public interest also convey a special, added benefit to individuals or groups who can afford to pay for them. In some cases, the services are now provided without charge. In other cases, the fees are substantially below the costs of providing the services. Thus, the general taxpayer is required to subsidize operations which should be self-supporting. The scope and cost of these hidden subsidies have grown considerably during the past decades. I firmly believe in the principle that Government services which give a special benefit to users should be financed by adequate charges paid by the users.” (p. M11)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Fourth (FY 1958) Budget Message:

“Government aids to aviation confer substantial special benefits upon the users of the airspace. As the cost of providing these benefits rises, it becomes increasingly appropriate for the users to share with the general taxpayers in paying for them.” (p. M40)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Fifth (FY 1959) Budget Message:

Charges for special services.—When the Government provides a service conferring a special quasi-commercial benefit on identifiable individuals or groups above and beyond the benefits to the public generally, I believe it should charge the beneficiaries for the special service, rather than place the full burden of cost on the general taxpayer.

“This principle has been put into practice in the financing of the new highway program through the payment of excise taxes by highway users into a highway trust fund. The forest and public lands highway programs of the Department of Commerce, however, are still financed from general revenues. Since most of these highways are on one of the Federal-aid systems, I recommend that their financing be transferred to the trust fund. Legislation will also be recommended to provide for payment from the trust fund of the expenses incurred by the Treasury in collecting taxes going into the trust fund, similar to the present practice of paying for the costs incurred by the Department of Labor in determining wage standards for highway contracts.

“In the field of aviation, the Federal Government provides a wide range of special services benefiting private users of the airspace. As I have previously pointed out, it is increasingly appropriate that these users pay their fair share of the costs. As first steps toward this end, this budget proposes that a tax of 3 ½ cents a gallon be levied on jet fuels and that taxes on aviation gasoline be increased to 3 ½ cents a gallon from the present 2 cents, with increases of ¾ cent per year for 4 years in both taxes up to 6 ½ cents a gallon. The receipts from taxes on aviation gasoline, which now go into the highway trust fund, should be kept in the general revenues to help finance the operations of the airways.” (pp. M30-M31)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Sixth (FY 1960) Budget Message:

Other changes in tax rates.—In order to make highway-related taxes support our vast highway expenditures, excises on motor fuels need to be increased 1 ½ cents a gallon to 4 ½ cents. These receipts will go into the highway trust fund and preserve the pay-as-we-go principle, so that contributions from general tax funds to build Federal-aid highways will not be necessary.

“At the same time, to help defray the rising costs of operating the Federal airways, receipts from excises on aviation gasoline should be retained in general budget receipts rather than transferred to the highway trust fund. The estimates of budget and trust fund receipts from excise taxes reflect such proposed action. They also include a proposal to have users of the Federal airways pay a greater share of costs through increased rates on aviation gasoline and a new tax on jet fuels. These taxes, like the highway gasoline tax, should be 4 cents per gallon. I believe it fair and sound that such taxes be reflected in the rates of transportation paid by the passengers and shippers.” (pp. M11-12)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Seventh (FY 1961) Budget Message:

“…this budget proposes… Recommendations for prompt legislative action to increase taxes on highway and aviation fuels, and to raise postal rates. These measures are needed to place on the users a proper share of the rising costs of the Federal airways and postal service, and to support the highway program at an increased level.” (pp. M6-M7)

Airway user charges.—Consistent with the principle that special beneficiaries of Government programs should pay the cost of those benefits, the users of the Federal airways should ultimately be expected to pay their full share of rising capital and operating costs. Accordingly, the effective tax on aviation gasoline should be raised from 2 to 4 ½ cents per gallon and the same tax should also be levied on jet fuels, which are now tax-free. Receipts from all aviation fuel taxes should be retained in the general fund rather than transferred to the highway trust fund as at present. These actions will increase revenues to the general fund by an estimated $89 million in fiscal year 1961.

Highways.—Federal payments of $2,728 million from the highway trust fund in 1961 will enable the States to proceed with construction of the Interstate System at a level consistent with the pay-as-you-build principle established by the Highway Revenue Act of 1956 and re- affirmed by the Congress in 1959. Last year I recommended that highway fuel taxes be increased by 1 ½ cents per gallon for a period of five years to meet estimated expenditure requirements. The Congress after months of delay enacted an increase of only 1 cent for less than two years.

“As a result of both the delay and the failure to provide the full amount of revenue requested, the roadbuilding program has been slowed below a desirable rate of progress. The apportionments to the States for future construction had to be reduced and a plan had to be established to time reimbursements to the States so that the trust fund could be kept in balance. By timely action and planning, however, potential failures to reimburse States promptly for want of funds in the trust fund have been avoided, and equitable and proportionate programs in every State have been established.

“I urge the Congress again to increase the highway fuel tax by another one-half cent per gallon and to continue the tax at 4 ½ cents until June 30, 1964. This will permit the construction program for the Interstate System to proceed at a higher and more desirable level. I request repeal of the diversion of excise taxes enacted last year for the period July 1, 1961, to June 30, 1964. New reports giving estimates of the cost of completing the Interstate System and recommendations on the allocation of costs among future highway beneficiaries will become available in 1961. At the appropriate time, further recommendations will be made to the Congress for the ensuing conduct and financing of the program.” (pp. M37-38)

Dwight D. Eisenhower, Eighth (FY 1962) Budget Message:

Airway user charges.—The civilian users of the Federal airways system enjoy substantial benefits from the large and growing Government outlays for improved traffic control and navigation services. Federal costs for operating and improving the airways system, excluding air- port grants and weather and other indirect services, now approach $600 million a year. It is wholly appropriate that civilian users begin to assume a more reasonable share of these costs, most of which are now borne by the general taxpayer.

“To achieve this purpose, it is again recommended that the present tax on aviation gasoline be increased from 2 to 4 ½ cents per gallon and that the 4 ½-cent tax rate be extended to jet fuels, which are now tax free. In addition, receipts from the existing and proposed aviation gasoline taxes should be placed in the general fund rather than transferred to the highway trust fund as at present. There is no sound reason for using these taxes to finance highway construction. The airlines should be assured that these tax increases may be reflected promptly in fare adjustments.” (p. M45)

Highways.—The Interstate Highway System has progressed considerably since the enactment of the Highway Act of 1956, with almost 10,000 miles now open to traffic. Active work is under way on another 14,600 miles, of which approximately 1,600 miles are expected to be open to traffic by the end of calendar year 1961. To continue this progress and assure timely completion of the Interstate System, two important legislative actions are required. The highway fuel tax should be increased to 4 ½ cents per gallon, as previously recommended, and the rate should be continued at this level through 1972, instead of reverting to 3 cents on July 1, 1961, as provided by present law. The unwise diversion of automotive excise taxes from the general fund to the highway trust fund, also scheduled for July 1, 1961, should be rescinded.

“Adoption of these recommendations will make it possible to complete the Interstate System in 1973 to meet the traffic needs for which it is designed. The enactment of my previous recommendations to (1) transfer financing of forest and public lands highways, which for the most part are components of the Federal-aid systems, from the general fund to the highway trust fund and (2) retain the receipts from aviation gas taxes in the general fund, will not extend this planned completion date. Under the proposed program, Federal payments from the trust fund for highways in fiscal year 1962 are estimated at $3,029 million, up from $2,868 million in 1961.” (p. M47)

John F. Kennedy, First (FY 1963) Budget Message:

“Transportation tax and user charges.—Under existing law, the 10% tax on transportation of persons is scheduled for reduction to 5% on July 1,1962. This tax poses special problems for common carriers which must compete with private automobiles not subject to the tax. At the same time it is clearly appropriate that passengers and shippers who benefit from special Government programs should bear a fair share of the costs of these programs.

“Accordingly, I recommend that the present 10% tax as it applies to passenger transportation other than by air be repealed effective July 1, 1962. I also recommend enactment of new systems of user charges for commercial and general aviation and for transportation on inland waterways.

“More specifically, I recommend that the following user charges be enacted, effective January 1, 1963, with the receipts to be retained in the general fund: (a) a 5% tax on airline tickets and on airfreight waybills; (b) a 2-cents-per-gallon tax on all fuels used in commercial air transportation, including jet fuels; and (c) a 3-cents-per-gallon tax on all fuels used in general aviation. The January 1, 1963, effective date will allow time for review by the Civil Aeronautics Board of fare adjustments that might be required by these user charges. Pending the proposed tax changes, the present 10% tax on air transportation and the 2-cents-per-gallon aviation gasoline tax should be continued until December 31, 1962.

“To extend the principle of user charges to inland waterways, a tax of 2 cents per gallon should be applied to all fuels used in transportation on these waterways, effective January 1, 1963.” (pp. 21-22)

John F. Kennedy, Second (FY 1964) Budget Message:

“User charges.—I am renewing the recommendations I made last year for the enactment of a series of user charges for commercial and general aviation and for transportation on inland waterways. The purpose of the recommendations is to assure that passengers and shippers who benefit from special Government programs will bear a more equitable share of the costs of these programs. Appropriate fees should also be assessed in other areas in which the Government pro- vides special benefits or conveys special privileges to the users and beneficiaries. Where new legislation is needed to carry out this policy—such as to update the schedule of fees for issuing patents, established in 1932—the necessary proposals will be sent to the Congress.” (pp. 14-15)

Lyndon B. Johnson, First (FY 1965) Budget Message:

“User charges.—Many Federal Government programs furnish specific, identifiable benefits to the individuals and businesses using them. Equity to all taxpayers demands that those who enjoy the benefits should bear a greater share of the costs. I am, therefore, renewing recommendations for the enactment of user charges for commercial and general aviation and for transportation on inland waterways.

“Appropriate fees should also be assessed in other areas where the Government provides special services. New legislation is necessary in several cases to carry out this policy—such as a revision of patent fees to reflect today’s costs more adequately—and appropriate proposals are either before the Congress or will be forwarded this year.” (p. 15)

Lyndon B. Johnson, Second (FY 1966) Budget Message:

“While I am recommending reductions in certain excise taxes, I am also proposing increases in certain other excise taxes which are in the nature of user charges. The excise taxes for which I am recommending reduction or repeal are not associated, with the provision of particular Government services. However, certain existing excises on transportation are in effect a charge for the use of facilities and services provided by the Government. In these cases, I am proposing changes in user charges for transportation so that different modes of transportation can compete on more equitable and efficient terms and users of special Government services will pay a greater share of the costs.

“The estimated cost of completing the Interstate Highway System— which is financed by highway user taxes—has recently been increased by $5.8 billion. To avoid serious delay in completing the system, while remaining on a pay-as-you-go basis, I will include in my excise tax proposals specific recommendations for increasing certain highway user charges.

“In contrast to the users of the highways, the users of the airways and inland waterways bear considerably less than the full cost of the Government investments and services provided them. Accordingly, I am recommending increased or new taxes on aviation gasoline and jet fuels and a new tax on air freight for commercial aviation. Receipts from the existing 2-cent tax on aviation gasoline should be kept in the general fund rather than transferred to the highway trust fund, and the 5% ticket tax on air passengers should be made permanent. A fuel tax for inland waterway users is also being proposed.

“I will continue to press for other user charges in Government pro- grams where benefits are provided to specific, identifiable individuals and businesses. Fairness to all taxpayers demands that those who enjoy special benefits should bear a greater share of the costs. Legislation is needed for some of the charges, such as patent and meat inspection fees. In other instances, equitable user charges will be instituted through administrative action.” (pp. 14-15)

Lyndon B. Johnson, Third (FY 1967) Budget Message:

“The nature of many government services is such that they should be provided without any charge or with only a nominal charge. However, in certain cases when a Government program provides special benefits or privileges to specific, identifiable individuals or businesses, appropriate user charges should be initiated. To this end, legislation will be proposed when necessary, and equitable user charges will be instituted administratively where authority exists to do so.

“This budget proposes a number of new or increased charges, the largest of which are in the transportation field. I again urge the Congress to enact legislation so that the primary beneficiaries will defray a larger part of the costs incurred by the Federal Government in providing transportation facilities and services to these beneficiaries.

“Increased highway user charges are essential for completing the Interstate Highway System on a pay-as-you-go basis and for financing certain additional activities of importance to highway travelers, such as safety programs.

“The users of the airways bear substantially less than the full cost of the Government investments and services upon which they rely. Accordingly, I am recommending an increase in the passenger ticket tax, increased taxes on fuels used by general aviation, and a new tax on air freight. Receipts from the fuel tax on general aviation which now go into the highway trust fund should be retained in the general fund.

“The facilities of the inland waterways system, which have been improved steadily by the Federal Government, presently are available to general and commercial users free of charge. I propose that they meet a portion of the cost of the system through a fuel tax.” (pp. 14-15)

Lyndon B. Johnson, Fourth (FY 1968) Budget Message:

User charges.—Legislation will be proposed in several areas to relieve the general taxpayer of the burden of financing programs that provide special benefits to certain individuals and groups. The user charges program also is being extended by administrative action, throughout the executive branch where legislative authority exists. All present charges are reexamined regularly to assure that they adequately reflect the costs incurred.

“In the transportation area, legislation is being proposed to collect from the users a greater share of the Government’s costs of providing its services. To augment Highway trust fund receipts, some additional user charges are being proposed. The tax on diesel fuel should be raised. The use tax on heavy vehicles should be increased according to a scale graduated by weight. These increases would move the contributions by operators of heavy trucks closer to a fair share of highway costs.

“Additionally, legislation is being proposed to finance the building of forest and public land highways, which are part of the Federal highway system, from the Highway trust fund where it more equitably belongs rather than from the General Fund.

“A 2% charge on air freight bills is being proposed, which will help to cover commercial aviation’s share of the cost of the Federal airway system. When coupled with the existing 5% levy on passenger tickets, the receipts from this proposal should be sufficient to permit repeal of the 2¢ per gallon charge on gasoline used in commercial aviation. A portion of the benefits conferred on general aviation should be met by increasing the existing charge on general aviation gasoline from 2¢ to 4¢ per gallon. A 4¢ per gallon charge on jet fuel used in general aviation is also being proposed.

“A charge of 2¢ per gallon is being proposed for all fuels used on the inland waterways. The proceeds will help pay the cost of maintaining the waterways.

“New and increased user charges are also being proposed in several other programs. These include: (1) various inspection services per- formed by the Food and Drug Administration; (2) commodity inspection and grading, and warehouse inspection and licensing by the Department of Agriculture; (3) administration of workmen’s compensation and safety programs for longshoremen and harbor workers by the Department of Labor; (4) Coast Guard merchant and towing vessel inspections, and various Customs navigation services; and (5) overtime border inspections of private vessels and aircraft.” (pp. 62-63)

Lyndon B. Johnson, Fifth (FY 1969) Budget Message:

User charges.–Legislation is being proposed in several areas to relieve the general taxpayer of the burden of financing programs that provide special benefits to certain individuals and groups. The user charges program also is being extended by administrative action where legislative authority exists. All present charges are reexamined regularly to assure that they adequately reflect the costs incurred.

“In the transportation area, legislation has been proposed to bring the payments by operators of heavy trucks closer to a fair share of highway costs; receipts to the Highway Trust Fund would be augmented by raising the tax on diesel fuel and by increasing the use tax on heavy vehicles according to a scale graduated by weight.

“Legislation will be proposed for additional user charges to help cover commercial and general aviation shares of the cost of the Federal airway system, following the completion of systems studies now underway.

“A user charge of 2 cents per gallon, increasing to 10 cents per gallon over the next 5 years, is proposed on fuel used by vessels navigating the inland waterways.” (p. 69)

Lyndon B. Johnson, Sixth (FY 1970) Budget Message:

“User charges.—In many areas of Government activity, where special benefits accrue to certain individuals and groups, charges are imposed on users or specific beneficiaries to provide a more equitable sharing of the cost of these Government services. Fees are collected in connection with the processing and awarding of patent and copy- right privileges and for providing specific immigration, passport and consular services. Transportation user charges help to finance some of the costs of providing adequate transportation services. For example, the Federal gasoline tax provides financial assistance for the Interstate Highway System, as well as other primary and secondary highways.

“Where legislative authority exists, the user charges program is being advanced by administrative action. All present charges are reexamined regularly to assure that they adequately reflect the costs incurred and benefits derived. In addition, legislation is being proposed which will extend this principle to other areas where such authority does not now exist.

“The budget proposes additional user charges which will add $410 million to 1970 budget receipts, mainly in the field of transportation. For highway users, a 2-cent-per-gallon increase is recommended in the present 4-cent-per-gallon diesel fuel tax. A change is also proposed in the present fixed-use tax on heavy vehicles to a graduated tax scale based on weight.

“For users of aviation services, charges are proposed effective July 1, 1969, to defray the costs of the planned major expansion of the national airways system and the proposed airport development program. Recommendations include:

  • An increase in the passenger ticket tax from 5% to 7%;
    • An increase from 2 to 8 cents per gallon in the tax on gasoline used in general aviation, rising to 10 cents on July 1, 1971;
    • An 8-cent-per-gallon tax on the now untaxed jet fuel used in general aviation, rising to 10 cents on July 1, 1971; and
    • A 3% waybill tax on air freight.
    “In addition, the budget recommends a charge of 2 cents per gallon, increasing to 10 cents over the next 5 years, on the now untaxed fuel used by vessels on inland waterways.” (p. 65)

Richard M. Nixon, First (FY 1971) Budget Message:

User charges.—In many areas of Government activity, where special benefits accrue to certain individuals or groups, charges are im- posed on users or specific beneficiaries to provide a more equitable sharing of the cost of these Government services. For example, fees are collected in connection with the processing and awarding of patent and copyright privileges and for providing specific immigration, passport, and consular services. Transportation user charges help to finance some of the costs of providing adequate transportation services.

“Where legislative authority exists, the user charges program is being advanced by administrative action. All charges are reexamined regularly to assure that they adequately compensate for costs incurred and reflect benefits derived.

“This budget repeats proposals made last year for additional user charges that will add $653 million to 1971 budget receipts, mainly in the field of transportation. For highway users, a 2-cent-per-gallon increase is recommended in the present 4-cent-per-gallon tax on diesel fuel. A change is also proposed in the present fixed-rate use tax on heavy trucks to a graduated scale based on weight.

“For users of aviation services, charges are proposed to defray the costs of the planned major expansion of the national airways system and the airport development program. Recommendations include:

  • An increase in the passenger ticket tax from 5% to 8%;
  • An increase in the tax on gasoline used in general aviation, from 2 to 9 cents per gallon;
  • A new 9 cent tax on jet fuel used in general aviation;
  • A 5% waybill tax on air freight; and
  • An international departure tax of $3.00 per passenger.” (p. 70)

Richard M. Nixon, Second (FY 1972) Budget Message:

User charges.—In many areas of Government activity, where special benefits accrue to specific individuals or groups, charges are imposed on users or specific beneficiaries to provide a more equitable sharing of the cost of these Government services. Receipts from this source in 1971 and 1972 have been increased by legislation enacted in the past session of Congress covering part of the costs of the planned major expansion of the national airways system and the airport development program.

“Legislation will again be proposed for additional user charges in the field of transportation. For highway users, a 2-cent-per-gallon increase is recommended in the present 4-cent-per-gallon tax on diesel fuel. A change is also proposed in the present fixed-rate use tax on heavy trucks to a graduated scale based on weight.” (p. 77)

Richard M. Nixon, Third (FY 1973) Budget Message:

User charges.—In many cases of Government activity, where identifiable benefits accrue to specific individuals or groups, charges are imposed on the users or specific beneficiaries to provide a more equitable and efficient sharing of the cost of these Government services.

“The administration has proposed legislation that would result in a more equitable sharing of highway cost. The legislation calls for a 2-cent-per-gallon increase in the present 4-cent-per-gallon tax on diesel fuel and a change from the present fixed-rate use tax on heavy trucks to a graduated-scale use tax based on weight. Together, these changes would produce $0.3 billion in revenues in 1973.” (p. 70)

“Efficiency means more than just a smoothly functioning system. The costs of the aviation system should be borne by the direct beneficiaries—the users of the airport and airway system. Charges should be set so that the user faces the cost he imposes on the system by his demand for service. The Administration plans to propose a revised schedule of aviation user charges to Congress based on a comprehensive study which the Department of Transportation is now conducting.”(p. 117)

Richard M. Nixon, Fourth (FY 1974) Budget Message:

Air transportation.—The Administration is committed to the continued development of an efficient and effective air transportation system. The cost of the aviation system, however, should be borne by those who benefit from it, not by the general taxpayer. The cost allocation study required by the Airport and Airway Development Act of 1970 will be submitted to Congress. The report will identify the costs to be allocated to various users and will propose legislation for user charges that fairly allocate civilian system costs. The Administration will also institute new administrative user charges for aviation certificates and licenses in order to recover costs associated with these functions.” (p. 109)

 Richard M. Nixon, Fifth (FY 1975) Budget Message:

“The Administration reemphasizes its support of the principle that the users of the aviation system should pay for the services they receive. The Airport and Airway Cost Allocation Study, recently submitted to the Congress, has established that many users are not paying for the full cost of the Federal aviation services they consume. Legislation will be proposed to increase service fees and to provide for user payment through the trust fund for part of the operating costs of the Federal aviation system. This proposal will close the gap between the revenues and costs of services related to civilian use over the next 4 years. It will also contain provisions to assure the continued funding of present Federal airport and airway capital development programs.” (pp. 94-95)

Gerald R. Ford, First (FY 1976) Budget Message:

Air transportation. —The Administration will propose major legislation on aviation development and revenues. The proposal will provide for continued long-term Federal development of the airway system, a substantial restructuring of the airport grant program to increase local flexibility and project eligibility while eliminating unnecessary Federal involvement, and a restructuring of user fees to reflect more equitably the burden that users place on the Federal aviation system. The proposal will authorize funds for new facilities, additional automation, and other improvements that will lead to a safer and more efficient airway system. Adjustments in user fees will include proposed charges for general aviation use of airport traffic control services while reducing air carrier taxes.” (p. 108)

Gerald R. Ford, Second (FY 1977) Budget Message:

Air transportation.—… The Administration’s proposal would also restructure user fees to make them more equitable and would relieve the general taxpayer from part of the burden of paying for all Federal aviation operation and maintenance expenses by requiring about 25% of these expenses, which total over $1.6 billion annually, to be financed by the air trust fund.” (pp. 101-102)

“The Administration will propose legislation to require waterway users to pay a share of the Federal cost of providing waterway facilities. Receipts resulting from this legislation are estimated at $80 million in 1977.” (p. 102)

Gerald R. Ford, Third (FY 1978) Budget Message:

“Three changes affecting miscellaneous receipts are being proposed again. They are: the write-off of discontinued currencies, mostly silver certificates, that have been determined to have been destroyed or irretrievably lost; authorization for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission to collect fees to cover the costs of its licensing services, including its reactor safety research program; and authorization to require navigators of Federal waterways, canals, locks, and channels to pay user fees to help defray the costs of waterways.” (p. 63)

 Jimmy Carter, First (FY 1979) Budget Message:

“The President has proposed that commercial users of inland water- ways pay a substantial share of the costs of the facilities from which they directly benefit. They now bear none of the costs of constructing and maintaining the waterway system. User fees would start in 1980 and rise until 100% of the operating costs and 50% of new construction costs were recovered.” (p. 55)

Jimmy Carter, Third (FY 1981) Budget Message:

“The administration has proposed legislation to extend the airport and airway trust fund from 1981 through 1985. The programs financed by this fund will expand the capacity and safety of the airport and traffic control system to handle the expected rapid growth in air transportation—growth that is partly attributable to the recent deregulation of the airline industry. The proposed budget authority for 1981-85 totals $14.6 billion. This total includes $8.0 billion for increased user financing of the FAA’s cost of operating the airway system, $4.0 billion for airport development grants and planning, $2.1 billion for facilities and equipment, and $0.5 billion for research and development. The administration has also proposed changes in user taxes that sustain the trust fund to provide a better balance between the sources of revenue and the groups that benefit from the various trust fund programs.(p. 202)

Jimmy Carter, Fourth (FY 1982) Budget Message:

“The 1982 budget also emphasizes redesigning Federal transportation programs so that costs are shared more equitably. In the trust fund-financed aviation programs, the administration recommends certain tax reforms both to strengthen the integrity of the “user pays” concept and better assure that users’ contributions are more in line with the benefits they receive. In the highway program, the administration supports continuing the highway trust fund and maintaining the existing relative tax burden imposed on the users of the system. In addition, the budget proposes the following cost- sharing initiatives for Federal rail programs:

  • sharing the cost of subsidies for Conrail with those who benefit most from its operation—labor, the States and localities, and shippers; and
  • requiring that by 1985 Amtrak ticket revenues cover 50% of Amtrak operating costs.” (pp. 184-185)

Ronald Reagan, FY 1982 Budget Amendments:

“The user fee principle is applicable to activities that provide direct economic benefits to a specific and known group of individuals or enterprises and where there is no need or reason for these beneficiaries to be subsidized by all taxpayers. The Administration proposes applying this criterion to certain Coast Guard expenses, inland waterways, and the air traffic control system. The scope for application of this principle extends to other areas as well.” (p. 9)

“The Administration is proposing an increase in aviation user taxes and an increase in user fees for barge operators beginning July 1, 1981. These charges are proposed to recover through governmental receipts most of the Federal costs associated with the safe and efficient movement of air traffic, the operation of waterways, and the construction of new facilities on these waterways. A proposal to levy user charges on yacht and boat owners and a proposed incase in fees paid by users of deepwater ports are classified as proprietary receipts and are offset against outlays in the transportation and natural resources and environment functions.” (pp. 16-17)

Ronald Reagan, First (FY 1983) Budget Message:

“While the Congress made great strides on most of our proposed budget cuts last year, the user fees proposals were a noticeable and disappointing departure from this pattern. The case for action now is even stronger than it was last year. With sacrifices required of almost every beneficiary of Federal programs, it is simply inexcusable and intolerable that yacht owners escape without paying even a small part of the Coast Guard services; or that commercial and general aviation are not paying the cost of the air traffic control system that ensures their safety; or that ship and barge operators do not pay a fair share of the costs of waterways maintained by the Federal Government. Our user fee package corrects these and similar shortcomings in current budget policy and will contribute significantly toward reducing the deficit.” (p. M18)

Ronald Reagan, Second (FY 1984) Budget Message:

Transportation.—In the transportation area, my administration has made major strides in implementing one of the fundamental principles in my program for economic recovery: having users pay for program costs that are clearly allocable to them. During the past year, I signed into law two administration-backed proposals to increase excise taxes on aviation and highway users and thereby provide funding needed to revitalize and modernize these important segments of the Nation’s transportation system. The 1984 budget reflects the administration’s continued commitment to the ‘users pay’ principle by again proposing user fees for:

  • construction and maintenance of deep-draft ports;
  • the inland waterway system;
  • selected direct Coast Guard services; and
  • nautical and aviation maps and charts.” (pp. M14-M15)

 Ronald Reagan, Third (FY 1985) Budget Message:

“The 1985 budget includes offsetting receipts of $200 million in navigation user fees in anticipation of legislation to recover capital and operating expenses of deep draft and inland waterway projects.” (p. 5-51)

Ronald Reagan, Fourth (FY 1986) Budget Message:

“…the administration continues to stress the importance of transportation users paying the full cost of the transportation benefits they receive. For example, the budget proposes increased user fees for many services currently provided free of charge by the Coast Guard to commercial and recreational boaters. To continue subsidizing certain transportation services at the expense of taxpayers could result in an undesirable allocation of society’s resources by penalizing unsubsidized, but socially and economically useful, transportation services.” (p. 5-67)

Ronald Reagan, Fifth (FY 1987) Budget Message:

“Funding for programs supported by the highway trust fund in 1987 is planned at the level of anticipated user fee receipts. This reduces 1987 budget authority for these programs about $2 billion below 1986…

“The administration continues to stress the importance of transportation users paying the full cost of the transportation benefits they receive. For example, the budget proposes increased user fees for many services currently provided free of charge by the Coast Guard to commercial and recreational boaters. Subsidizing certain transportation services at the expense of all taxpayers results in a misallocation of society’s resources by penalizing unsubsidized, but socially and economically useful, transportation services.” (p. 5-67)

Ronald Reagan, Sixth (FY 1988) Budget Message:

Set Federal Highway Funding Equal to User Fee Receipts.—Highway construction and repair on the 834,000-mile Federal-aid high- way system is financed by Federal highway user fees in combination with State and local funds. The administration proposes to set annual Federal highway spending equal to the average annual amount of user fee receipts, excluding interest, deposited in the highway trust fund. This approach is necessary, because in recent years highway program authorizations have exceeded annual user fee collections and hence have contributed to the deficit. Consolidation of several Federal-aid programs, together with provisions to increase the flexibility States have in spending these funds, would improve the abilities of States to meet highway needs.” (p. 2-22)

Repeal Exemptions from Gasoline and Other Highway Excise Taxes.—Under current law, gasohol and certain other alcohol fuels are partially exempted from Federal excise taxes on gasoline and diesel fuel. Public bus operators are fully exempted from Federal gasoline, diesel fuel, and other highway excise taxes; in general, private bus operators are fully or partially exempted from these taxes. State and local governments are exempted from all Federal highway excise taxes. Consistent with its position that highway users should pay taxes that correspond to the wear and tear that they cause the highway system, the administration proposes to repeal these exemptions effective October 1, 1987, resulting in in- creased receipts to the highway trust fund of $0.8 billion in 1988.” (p. 2-40)

Charge for Coast Guard Services.—The Coast Guard currently provides services such as inspections, licenses, navigation aids, and search and rescue without charge to commercial operators and recreational boaters. The administration proposes a phased implementation of fees for users of Coast Guard services, totaling $355 million in 1988 and $474 million a year thereafter. Fees for direct services involving a transaction (e.g., issuing licenses) would be set to recover the cost to the Coast Guard of providing the specific service. Fees for other services would be set in proportion to the Coast Guard’s cost of providing the availability of the services to each class of users—recreational, commercial fishing, deep-sea commercial, and inland commercial. The cost of Coast Guard programs that benefit the general public (e.g., defense preparedness, law enforcement, and polar ice operations) would not be included in the user fees, because they are core functions of Government that should be paid for by all taxpayers.” (p. 2-49)

Ronald Reagan, Seventh (FY 1989) Budget Message:

“Obligations for highway, highway safety, and transit programs supported by the highway trust fund are targeted to the level of anticipated user fee receipts over the authorization period, 1987 through 1991…

“The administration continues to stress the importance of requiring transportation users to pay the full cost of their transportation benefits. The administration proposes to finance 78 percent of transportation costs by user fees in 1989, compared to 45 percent of these costs funded by user fees in 1981. Subsidizing certain transportation services at the expense of all taxpayers results in a misallocation of society’s resources and provides an unfair disadvantage to unsubsidized, but socially and economically useful, transportation services.” (p . 5-73)

Ronald Reagan, Eighth (FY 1990) Budget Message:

“Obligations for highway, highway safety, and transit programs supported by the highway trust fund are targeted to the level of anticipated user fee receipts over the authorization period, 1987 through 1991. Requested funding for air transportation is increased by $1.2 billion, or 16 percent, between 1989 and 1990, with the largest increase associated with the need to continue modernization of the air traffic control system.

“The administration continues to stress the importance of requiring transportation users to pay the full cost of their transportation benefits. In 1981, 45 percent of the Department of Transportation’s (DOT) costs were funded by user fees. As a result of continual efforts since 1981, the administration is able to propose that 74 percent of DOT’s costs be financed through user fees in 1990. Subsidizing certain transportation services at the expense of all taxpayers results in a misallocation of society’s resources and provides an unfair disadvantage to unsubsidized, but socially and economically useful, transportation services.” (p. 5-82)

George H.W. Bush, First (FY 1991) Budget Message:

“The aviation system has traditionally been financed in part through user fees deposited in the aviation trust fund. In this way the aviation user is a partner in financing a safe and efficient system. However, aviation users have not been financing their share of the system’s costs. For example, a 1989 Congressional Budget Office report pointed out that ‘…private sector users of the aviation system have received more in capital and operating spending than they have paid in taxes.’

“As noted previously, the 1991 budget provides major increases for expanded airport capacity, modernizing air traffic control equipment, and hiring more air traffic controllers. To provide the necessary funding increases and to continue the principle of user financing, the Administration proposes to increase aviation user fees accordingly. The passenger ticket fee would be raised from 8 to 10 percent and other aviation fees would be raised similarly.” (pp. 137-138)

George H.W. Bush, Third (FY 1993) Budget Message:

“The aviation system has been financed in large part through user fees deposited in the Airport and Airway Trust Fund. In this way the aviation user is a partner in financing a safe and efficient system. Proposed spending on aviation programs in 1993 will exceed the fees paid by users of  the  aviation  system—$8.7  billion  in  spending compared to $5.7 billion in fees. This continues  the  trend  in  place  since  the  Airport  and  Airway Trust Fund’s inception whereby Federal spending on  FAA programs has  far exceeded  aviation  receipts.  (Aviation  spending  is  compared  to  receipts  in  Table  7-5.)  Users  should finance their fair share of aviation spending,  including  equipment  modernization, research, airport grants, and a portion of the staffing costs necessary to keep flying safe and  secure.” (Part One, p. 157)

Bill Clinton, First (FY 1994) Budget Message (A Vision for Change in America):

Phase-in increased Inland Waterway user fees. The Nation’s inland waterways are the most heavily subsidized form of commercial freight transportation. Since the system was constructed for commercial navigation beneficiaries, they should pay for all operation and maintenance costs. Existing inland waterway fuel taxes collected on applicable segments of the system only offset half of the Corps of Engineers’ cost of construction and major rehabilitation (estimated at $430 million in 1993). This proposal would increase the 1994 Federal inland waterway fuel tax from 19 cents to $1.19 per gallon in a series of increasing steps to a total of $1.00. Estimated savings are $460 million in 1997, $820 million over four years.” (p. 76)

DOT/Increase registration fees for general aviation aircraft. General aviation aircraft account for about 26 percent of the Federal Aviation Administration’s cost of running our aviation system, but pay fees covering just 7 percent of these costs. Airlines and their passengers pay all the costs they impose on the system. As a result, taxpayers provide general aviation operators with an annual subsidy of about $2 billion. This proposal would gradually increase current general aviation registration fees over 4 years and require annual, rather than 3-year, renewals. The increased fees will result in general aviation operators still paying only a fraction of their “fair share” costs. Estimated savings over four years are $151 million, including $58 million in 1997.” (p. 82)

Bill Clinton, Third (FY 1996) Budget Message:

U.S. Air Traffic Services Corporation: A reinvented DOT no longer will perform functions for which the Federal Government is not best suited. The core Federal role in aviation is to regulate safety and encourage infrastructure investment. It need not include the day-to-day operations of the air traffic control system.

“As a result, the Administration will propose legislation to transfer the FAA’s air traffic control services to a wholly-owned Government Air Traffic Services Corporation. The corporation will be free of most Federal procurement, personnel, and budget restrictions, thereby giving it the flexibility to speed modernization of the air traffic system and improve its operating efficiency. This proposal implements recommendations of the National Performance Review, the President’s Airline Commission, and others.

“The corporation will be fully self-supporting through its own user fees, interest on those fees, and debt financing. The corporation’s Board of Directors will adopt a business plan which will determine corporation spending, borrowing (subject to the Secretary’s disapproval), and fees. In conjunction with the corporation, the Administration will propose that residual FAA functions, some of which are now funded out of general revenues, be fully fee-funded in 1997.” (p. 12)

Bill Clinton, Fifth (FY 1998) Budget Message:

Infrastructure Investment. America has four million miles of roads, 580,000 bridges, 123,000 miles of railway, 5,500 public-use airports, 6,000 transit systems, and 25,000 miles of commercially-navigable waterways. This extensive, multi-modal network is essential to the Nation’s commerce and a more efficient system would help the economy.

“The Federal Government has helped develop large parts of the system, with much of the help financed by user fees and transportation taxes. Total Federal investment in transportation represents about half of total public investment—that is, $27 billion of the $54 billion of Federal, State, and local spending on transportation infrastructure in 1993.” (p. 169)

Bill Clinton, Sixth (FY 1999) Budget Message:

Innovating to Invest. Challenging times demand innovative solutions, and the budget meets the challenge by proposing three new investment funds for America—for research, the environment, and transportation—that will focus attention on these critical priorities. Together, the funds provide $75.5 billion, a $4.7 billion increase over the 1998 level for the programs they contain. Because the funds rely on budget offsets to help finance the spending, they, in effect, apply pay-as-you-go principles to discretionary spending…

“The Transportation Fund for America, which includes the Transportation Department’s highway, highway safety, and transit programs; the Flight 2000 free flight demonstration program; and the Federal Aviation Administration’s programs, including Airport Grants. The budget finances the Fund, in part, through a new Federal aviation user fee.” (p. 16)

“As aviation funding rises in the next five years, the budget assumes that direct user fees will support more of this investment. Over time, excise taxes will give way to more efficient service-based charges. By 2003, direct user fees, which encourage better system management and more accurately reflect system use, would fund the NAS completely.” (p. 89)

Bill Clinton, Eighth (FY 2001) Budget Message:

“To ensure the effective and efficient use of its resources, the FAA is continuing implementation of acquisition, financial and personnel reforms. Procurement reform has enabled the FAA to pre-screen contractors ensuring that firms have the capabilities and experience to deliver technology systems that improve air traffic control. Personnel reform will result in a new pay-for-performance system that focuses employees on key agency goals. In addition, the FAA will use its existing legislative authorities to create a performance-based organization for air traffic control services to be funded through direct user fees. These combined efforts will allow the FAA to operate more like a business, modernize more quickly, and be more responsive to customers.” (p. 18)

George W. Bush, First (FY 2002) Budget Message (A Blueprint for New Beginnings):

Transportation User Fees: To ensure that users pay for specialized services or Government support, the budget assumes that $75 million will be raised from new user fees to offset the costs associated with the regulation of the transportation of hazardous materials, expanded Federal inspection of the Nation’s over two million miles of pipeline, and support the railroad safety inspection program.”

George W. Bush, Second (FY 2003) Budget Message:

“The budget provides $5.7 billion in discretionary funding for the Coast Guard, including $406 million for increased port security. The budget also proposes a commercial navigational user fee to help pay for increased port security needs.” (p. 257)

George W. Bush, Fourth (FY 2005) Budget Message:

“In addition, SAFETEA would allow States to establish user fees on Federal-aid highways, including the Interstate System, provided that the funds are re-invested to improve highways. The user fees must be established as part of a program to manage congestion or improve air quality. SAFETEA would also allow States to permit Single Occupancy Vehicles (SOVs) on High Occupancy Vehicle lanes, as long as time-of-day variable charges are assessed on SOVs for such access.” (p. 263)

George W. Bush, Sixth (FY 2007) Budget Message:

Financing Reform for the Air Traffic Control System. FAA is funded by a combination of aviation excise taxes and general fund contributions. The rapid growth of low-cost carriers and continued pressure on ticket prices has made the stability of the current tax structure unpredictable. Among users there is widespread recognition that the FAA’s financing system needs reform. FAA aims to create a more direct relationship between user fees collected and services received, thereby creating incentives to make the system more responsive to user needs and more efficient. Such an approach would reduce costs for users, the taxpayers, and consumers.

“DOT has concluded that the problems faced by the air traffic control system require bold and fundamental changes. FAA’s programs and taxes expire on September 30, 2007. Accordingly, DOT will propose a new cost-based financing system for FAA in spring 2006. This proposal will fulfill the goals developed by the Administration, which are:

“• Continue to control costs;

“• Create a more direct relationship between revenue and use of the system; and

“• Establish a more stable and predictable source of revenue and equitable treatment of stakeholders.” (pp. 222-223)

George W. Bush, Seventh (FY 2008) Budget Message:

Building a More Efficient Air Traffic Control System to Meet the Air Travel Demands of the Future. Under the Federal Aviation Administration’ s (FAA’s) current tax structure , which expires at the end of 2007, there is no relationship between the taxes paid by users and the air traffic control services provided by FAA. For example, two identical commercial jets fly between Miami and Boston at the same time of day. One is full of passengers , while the other is nearly empty, yet both impose the same workload on FAA. Since the current tax structure is primarily based on the price of a ticket, FAA collects much more in taxes from the full plane than from the nearly empty plane. Under its reauthorization proposal, FAA aims to create a direct relationship between revenue collected and services received, providing FAA with a stable revenue stream and creating incentives to make the system more efficient and responsive to user needs.

“The 2008 Budget includes a reauthorization proposal that transforms FAA’s excise tax financing system into a cost-based user fee system. Under this system, aviation users would pay for the actual level of service that FAA provides in managing the use of the national airspace. User fees would enable users to gauge the actual costs of their requirements on the system. By providing clearer price signals , a new direct payment structure will also enable FAA to better target investment and management decisions that provide the greatest system performance benefits . This new model encourages FAA to control costs , increase accountability, and improve its ability to operate like a business.

“Under the proposal, FAA’s financing for air traffic operations will primarily be based on user fees instead of excise taxes . FAA would have the authority to collect the user fees that directly offset the cost of its operations; expenditure of the available fees would be affirmed in the appropriations process . User fees would be collected from commercial aviation operators . General aviation users would continue to pay a fuel tax. Both user fees and fuel tax rates would be calibrated based on the costs that the users impose on the system. FAA would also be able to charge all users a fee for operating in the Nation’s most congested airspace . FAA’s budget would maintain a general fund component to cover activities that benefit the public good, like safety oversight functions and public use of the airspace . FAA’s airport grants program would continue to be funded from fuel taxes paid by all users ($2.75 billion for 2008).” (p. 108)

George W. Bush, Eighth (FY 2009) Budget Message:

Proposes reforms to FAA. Resubmits the proposal to reauthorize and strengthen FAA and change its financing structure.

  • Establishes a cost-based system for financing FAA, employs market mechanisms for alleviating delays, and makes the system more accountable to aviation stakeholders .
  • Eliminates the current ticket taxes , which are based on the price of a ticket and have no direct link to FAA’s cost of managing aircraft.
  • Generates revenues based on the costs that different flights impose on the air traffic system, whether they are commercial, business, or general aviation.

Curbing Transportation Congestion

  • Targets airline delays in the Nation’ s most congested regions using market-based mechanisms.
  • Authorizes FAA to charge higher user fees during peak hours and lower fees during non -peak hours.” (p. 97)

Barack Obama, First (FY 2010) Budget Message (A New Era of Responsibility):

“To minimize overall costs to taxpayers, the Budget proposes to increase the existing Aviation Passenger Security Fee beginning in 2012. Increasing this fee will offset costs associated with Transportation Security Administration screening of aviation passengers as the current fee only captures 36 percent of the cost of aviation security. By increasing the fee, offsetting collections from all aviation security fees would cover a majority of the estimated costs of passenger and baggage screening.” (p. 71)

Barack Obama, Third (FY 2012) Budget Message:

Reforms the Way Federal Navigation Activities Are Funded. The Administration proposes to expand the authorized uses of the Harbor Maintenance Trust Fund, so that its receipts are also available to finance the Federal share of other Federal efforts in support of commercial navigation through our ports. The Administration will also work with the Congress to reform the laws governing the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, including increasing the revenue paid by commercial navigation users sufficiently to meet their share of the costs of activities financed from this trust fund.” (p. 143)

Barack Obama, Fourth (FY 2013) Budget Message:

Share Payments More Equitably for Air Traffic Services. All flights that use controlled air space require a similar level of air traffic services. However, commercial and general aviation can pay very different aviation fees for those same air traffic services. To reduce the deficit and more equitably share the cost of air traffic services across the aviation user community, the Administration proposes to create a $100 per flight fee, payable to the Federal Aviation Administration, by aviation operators who fly in controlled airspace. All piston aircraft, military aircraft, public aircraft, air ambulances, aircraft operating outside of controlled airspace, and Canada-to-Canada flights would be exempted. This fee would generate an estimated $7.4 billion over 10 years. Assuming the enactment of the fee, total charges collected from aviation users would finance roughly three-fourths of airport investments and air traffic control system costs.” (pp. 30-31)

“While we are committed to the user-financed principle that has guided surface transportation, we recognize that more funds will be needed to make these overdue investments. That is why the Administration is proposing to use savings from ending the war in Iraq and winding down operations in Afghanistan to pay for the difference.” (p. 56)

Barack Obama, Fifth (FY 2014) Budget Message:

Share Payments More Equitably for Air Traffic Services. All flights that use controlled air space require a similar level of air traffic services. However, commercial and general aviation can pay very different aviation fees for those same air traffic services. To reduce the deficit and more equitably share the cost of air traffic services across the aviation user community, the Budget proposes to create a $100 per flight fee, payable to the Federal Aviation Administration, by aviation operators who fly in controlled airspace. All piston aircraft, military aircraft, public aircraft, air ambulances, aircraft operating outside of controlled airspace, and Canada-to-Canada flights would be exempted. This fee would generate an estimated $7.3 billion over 10 years. Assuming the enactment of the fee, total charges collected from aviation users would finance roughly three-fourths of airport investments and air traffic control system costs. To ensure appropriate input from stakeholders on the design of the fee, the proposal would also establish an expert Commission that could recommend to the President a replacement charge, or charges, that would raise no less in revenue than the enacted fee.” (p. 43)

Reforms Inland Waterways Financing. The Administration has proposed legislation to reform the laws governing the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, including establishing an annual per vessel fee to increase the amount paid by commercial navigation users sufficiently to meet their share of the costs of activities financed from this fund. The additional revenue would help finance future capital investments in these waterways to support economic growth. The amounts collected would reflect the actual costs incurred, so any cost savings would translate over time directly into lower fees.” (p. 150)

Barack Obama, Sixth (FY 2015) Budget Message:

Reforming the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) passenger fees to reflect the cost of aviation security ($5 billion). While the Congress took steps toward better matching TSA fees with costs in the BBA, the Budget proposes to further reform these user fees to more closely reflect the costs of passenger screening and other aviation security services.” (p. 16)

Reforms Inland Waterways Funding. The Administration has proposed to reform the laws governing the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, including an annual per vessel fee to sufficiently increase the amount paid by commercial navigation users to meet their share of the costs of activities financed from this fund. The additional revenue would help finance future capital investments in these waterways. The amounts collected would reflect the actual costs incurred, so any cost savings would translate over time directly into lower fees.” (p. 132)

Donald Trump, First (FY 2018) Budget Message:

“The Budget reflects the proposal to shift the air traffic control function to an independent, non-governmental organization beginning in 2021, with a cap reduction in discretionary spending of $72.8 billion, and reduction in aviation excise taxes of $115.6 billion. These estimated changes represent a high-level reflection of the Administration’s proposal.” (p. 19) (This document does not say so, but in the detailed proposal, most of the reduced excise tax receipts were to be replaced with user fees.)

Donald Trump, Second (FY 2019) Budget Message:

Reforms Air Traffic Control. Consistent with the 2018 Budget, the Budget includes a multiyear reauthorization proposal to shift the air traffic control function of the Federal Aviation Administration to a non-governmental, independent air traffic services cooperative, making the system more efficient and innovative while maintaining safety. Similar to successful efforts in many other developed countries, the goal is to create a system that can respond to changing air travel demand by deploying cutting-edge technology and giving airlines, general aviation users, and passengers a system that is a good steward of their financial resources.” (p. 86)

Reforms Inland Waterways Funding. The Budget proposes to reform the laws governing the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, including an annual per vessel fee for commercial users, to help finance future capital investments on these waterways and a portion of the cost of operating and maintaining them. The current diesel fuel tax is insufficient to support the users’ share of these costs.”

Donald Trump, Third (FY 2020) Budget Message:

Reforms Inland Waterways Funding. The Budget proposes to reform the laws governing the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, including an annual per-vessel fee for commercial users, to help finance future capital investments on these waterways and a portion of the cost of operating and maintaining them. The current diesel fuel tax is insufficient to support the users’ share of these costs.” (p. 90)

Donald Trump, Fourth (FY 2021) Budget Message:

Improves the Transportation of Goods on the Nation’s Inland Waterways. The Budget proposes to reform the laws governing the Inland Waterways Trust Fund, including an annual per-vessel fee for commercial users; to help finance future capital investments on these waterways and a portion of the cost of their operation and maintenance. The current diesel fuel tax is insufficient to support the users’ share of these costs.” (pp. 94-95)

Search Eno Transportation Weekly

Latest Issues

Happening on the Hill

Tags

Related Articles

Senate Committee Discusses Trade and Customs Policy

May 24, 2024 | Kirbie Ferrell
May 21, 2024 - The Senate Subcommittee on International Trade, Customs, and Global Competitiveness held a hearing on Tuesday titled...

Maryland Bridge Replacement to Cost $1.7-$1.9B; Progressive Design-Build to Be Used

May 3, 2024 | Jeff Davis
May 2, 2024 - Maryland officials told the media yesterday that the replacement cost for the Francis Scott Key Bridge...

Biden Announces Plan to Assist U.S. Steel, Shipbuilding Industries

Apr 19, 2024 | Jeff Davis
April 19, 2024 - President Biden this week requested higher tariffs on Chinese-made steel and aluminum, and his trade rep...

Balancing Act: The Next Generation of Mariners in the Maritime Industry

Mar 28, 2024 | Rear Admiral Ann C. Phillips, U.S. Navy (Ret.)
March 28, 2024 - Throughout my years of service as a Naval Officer I was frequently reminded that experience matters....

Senate Begins WRDA Deliberations

Mar 1, 2024 | Garett Shrode
March 1, 2024 - The Senate Committee on Environment and Public Works held a hearing to discuss the projects, programs...

House Panel Looks at Impacts of Red Sea Shipping Disruptions

Feb 2, 2024 | Kirbie Ferrell
February 2, 2024 - A House subcommittee this week looked at the impacts of Houthi missile launches on maritime shipping...

Year-End Defense Bill Contains Maritime Reauthorization

Dec 8, 2023 | Jeff Davis
December 8, 2023 - Next week, the Senate will vote on a 2,305-page, $874 billion national defense authorization bill early...

House Subcommittee Meets to Discuss Autonomous Maritime Technology, Submarines

Sep 22, 2023 | Kirbie Ferrell
September 19, 2023 - The House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation met to discuss the use of autonomous...

The History of the Inland Waterways Trust Fund

Aug 31, 2023 | Jeff Davis
August 31, 2023 - The story of the creation of, and changes to, the Inland Waterways Trust Fund

As Other Agencies Face Cutbacks, House Appropriators Give Corps Water Program 15% Increase

Jun 16, 2023 | Jeff Davis
June 16, 2023 - A draft bill approved in an House subcommittee yesterday would provide $9.6 billion in new funding...

Trade Subcommittee Discusses Strategies to Modernize Customs Policies

May 26, 2023 | Anusha Chitturi
May 26, 2023 - The House Ways and Means’ Subcommittee on Trade held a hearing on May 25 to discuss...

House T&I Approves 16 Surface and Maritime Transportation Bills

May 26, 2023 | Jeff Davis
May 26, 2023 - The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee this week approved sixteen bills making discrete policy changes to...