Unless some action is taken during the regular 2018 session — which begins Feb. 7 — the House chairman of the General Assembly’s tax-writing panel said he’s convinced capital projects will stall, rail and bus fares will rise, and key transit services will be canceled.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy continued to set the stage Wednesday for a landmark 2018 transportation finance debate, outlining nearly 400 capital projects worth $4.3 billion that would be suspended over the next five years because of inadequate funding.
Connecticut’s cash-starved transportation program would need to scrap some rail services, drive up fares, suspend 40 percent of planned capital projects and defer major highway rebuilds like the Hartford Viaduct, to remain solvent over the next five years, Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s administration has warned Wall Street.
I hate to say “I told you so,” but… just as I’d predicted, Gov. Dannel Malloy’s hand-picked Transportation Finance Panel has finally issued its recommendations for paying for the governor’s 30-year, $100 billion transportation “plan.” Interestingly, as it began work last summer, the Transportation Finance Panel wasn’t allowed to debate the merits of anything in the governor’s “plan,” so all they could do was suggest how to fund the whole thing.
A state panel is recommending restoring tolls to Connecticut highways, raising sales and gasoline taxes, and taking other steps to finance a 30-year transportation program – but Gov. Dannel P. Malloy said Thursday he would propose none of the revenue-raising proposals in the new budget he will give legislators in three weeks.
Despite the recent infusion of sales tax receipts, Connecticut’s transportation program could be in deficit by mid-2018, according to nonpartisan analysts. And while Gov. Dannel P. Malloy’s administration believes the Special Transportation Fund will remain in the black through 2020 — albeit by a razor-thin margin — nonpartisan analysts cite several problems, including surging debt and pension costs and downgraded expectations for fuel tax revenues.
WASHINGTON – In a long-awaited compromise, Congress unveiled a final, five-year transportation bill on Tuesday that would boost money to the states and change the way Amtrak’s Northeast Corridor routes are funded.
The group studying how to fund a 30-year transportation improvement program in Connecticut knows there are few options – if any – that won’t spark controversy. But the state’s Transportation Finance Panel watched that challenge expand significantly after its research became the focal point of an intensifying partisan battle among state legislative leaders.
Television and published reports have recently covered the talks going on in Hartford about ways to fund Gov. Dannel Malloy’s $100 billion, 30-year transportation infrastructure plan. These include discussion of a plan to tax motorists according to the number of miles they drive. Before this plan is even considered, I have a radical idea: tally up every nickel that has been diverted from the Transportation Fund over the past 20 years — by BOTH PARTIES — along with what social programs or agencies were the recipient of those diverted funds. Then, every nickel of those diverted funds should be clawed back from their budgets and re-deposited into the Transportation Fund and used for the intended purpose of transportation infrastructure maintenance.
WASHINGTON – Sens. Richard Blumenthal and Chris Murphy on Thursday both voted for short-term and against long-term legislation that would keep hundreds of millions of dollars in federal highway money flowing to Connecticut.
WASHINGTON – Congress faces a looming deadline to approve a highway bill if it wants to keep federal transportation dollars from slowing to a trickle in a few weeks, but there’s no consensus on what to do. To press the GOP to action, Sen. Richard Blumenthal and other Democrats unveiled a plan Thursday.
Washington — The law that authorizes federal transportation spending in Connecticut and across the nation runs out at the end of the month, and the fund that pays for that spending is expected to go broke two months later, but Connecticut says it has funding in place for at least six months’ worth of projects if Congress fails to act in time to avert the looming crisis.
WASHINGTON – Sen. Chris Murphy, in partnership with Republican Sen. Bob Corker of Tennessee, has renewed a push for their proposal to raise the gasoline tax to shore up a transportation fund that will soon run out of money, threatening road and bridge projects in Connecticut and elsewhere across the nation.
Though Gov. Dannel P. Malloy would consider restoring tolls if Connecticut creates a legal “lockbox” to ensure receipts are spent on transportation, other states’ have struggled to keep their “boxes” locked. And because Connecticut’s transportation program relies on many sources for funding, guarantees to protect toll receipts might mean little if other sources are diverted.
At first glance, Connecticut’s transportation system is in line for a big boost no matter who wins the race for governor. But as candidates tout their transportation platforms, they simultaneously espouse other fiscal positions that all but eliminate any hope of a major boost in transportation spending. The last of three parts.