Senate Votes 27-20 to Pass HB1515 - Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act of 2013
“With the passage of the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act today, we will support more than 57,000 jobs, ease traffic congestion, and build a 21st century transportation network. Maryland has now recovered nearly 95 percent of the jobs lost during the Bush recession, and today’s vote will help us put even more families back to work. Thanks to the extraordinary leadership of Senate President Miller, House Speaker Busch and their colleagues in the General Assembly, Maryland is poised to create jobs and expand opportunity.”
March 29, 2013 - Passed the Senate
March 22, 2013 - Passed the House
The proposal (HB 1515) developed by the Governor and legislative leadership, and modified by the House of Delegates, will generate an average of $800 million annually at full implementation.
If enacted, it will create an additional transportation investment of $4.4 billion over the next six years (FY 2014–FY 2019) for the Maryland Department of Transportation (MDOT) and it will create or support more than 57,200 jobs.
How It Works
Effective July 1, 2013:
Index the current 23.5-cent-per-gallon state gasoline tax to the Consumer Price Index (CPI) to adjust for inflation, but also limit the index increase to the gas tax rate so that it cannot exceed 8% a year.
Apply 1% of the state sales tax on the price of gasoline (before federal and state taxes).
Requires MDOT to conduct two studies and report back to the Governor and the General Assembly:
Study the effects of indexing. Report due by January 1, 2019.
Study implementing a voucher program to provide free or reduced transit fares for individuals whose household income does not exceed 125% of the federal poverty guidelines. Report due by December 31, 2013.
Effective July 1, 2014:
State Treasury to issue General Obligation Bonds for federally required environmental improvements undertaken by the State Highway Administration (SHA).
Index transit fares charged by the Maryland Transit Administration (MTA) to the CPI (bus, light rail, metro subway, commuter bus and MARC rail service).
Effective January 1, 2015:
Effective July 1, 2015:
Effective January 1, 2016:
State transportation to receive revenue generated by implementation of the federal Marketplace Fairness Act (provided passage by Congress - enables states to require internet sellers to collect sales taxes.)
As a safeguard, and only if federal act doesn’t pass, the 3% state sales tax on gasoline increases to 4%.
Effective July 1, 2016:
Impact on Gas Price at the Pump*
*Note: For illustrative purposes to show impact of the Transportation Infrastructure Investment Act, this example assumes a constant gas price of $3.56 per gallon - the average price in FY 2013.
On July 1, 2013:
In the first year, the tax on a gallon of gas will increase by approximately four cents. To demonstrate the potential impact, let’s assume gas at the pump is $3.56 on June 30, 2013.
Here is what you would see at the pump: June 30, 2013 - $3.56 per gallon becomes $3.60 per gallon on July 1, 2013.
On January 1, 2015, increase to 2%, resulting in an additional increase of 4 cents per gallon to $3.64.
On July 1, 2015, increase to 3%, resulting in an additional increase of 4 cents per gallon to $3.68.
If federal act doesn’t pass: On January 1, 2016, the 3% state sales tax on gasoline increases to 4%, resulting in an additional 3.5 cents per gallon. On July 1, 2016, the 4% state sales tax on gasoline increases to 5%, resulting in another 3.5 cents per gallon, adding a total of 7 cents more per gallon in 2016, bringing the pump price up to $3.75.
Impact on Transit Fares (bus, light rail, metro subway, commuter bus and MARC rail service)
On July 1, 2014:
MTA’s one-way fare for bus, light rail and metro subway is projected to increase 10 cents to $1.70 from the current $1.60.
Fares for commuter bus and MARC rail service are projected to increase $1. The legislation also sets forth periodic CPI adjustments for bus, light rail and metro fares every two years, and commuter bus and MARC rail service every five years.
Because Maryland’s flat 23.5-cent-per-gallon gas tax has not changed since 1992, the purchasing power of the gas tax has dropped nearly 70%. A dollar for transportation in 1992 is worth about 30 cents today.
Maryland is running out of money to build transportation improvements, just as citizens face some of the worst traffic congestion in the nation.
By 2017, SHA’s budget for new expansion projects will drop to virtually zero.
Without new revenue, MTA will delay plans to replace transit equipment required to improve the reliability of bus, MARC, Metro and light rail systems. In the Washington region, WMATA service improvements also would be impacted.
Beyond transit and highways, the competitive position of the Port of Baltimore and its 14,000 direct jobs would be in jeopardy if funding is not available to dredge and keep channels clear or create new dredge placement sites in the Baltimore Harbor that could eventually become the Port of Baltimore’s next major terminal.