It is a rare top about infrastructure cost in water carrier section of transportation. As we all know the most significant advantage of water transportation is almost none fix cost, because Mother Nature provide channels free for all the human beings. However, this proposal aim to increase a fuel tax 6 cent per gallon on commercial river-boat operators, big river user like U.S. Army Corps of Engineers who would end up pay 100million on inland water transportation. the cost seems like a variable cost but actually a cost for infrastructure.
The argument about this proposal is mainly about benefiters and payer of this tax rise. Lawmakers and Obama administration point out the no-change in fuel tax in inland transportation since 1995, and the revenue of tax declined with JIT kitted in inland water transportation lost competency on speed, and this increase in fuel tax would shift cost of maintain the river from tax payer to commercial operator. However, who would pay for this bill doubt the fairness of being place as only payer but one of the benefiters in this proposal.
There are several parts interested me in this news. 6 cents a gallon seems cheap, but consider with the large capacity of water carrier it would not be a small bill any more. In the circumstance that inland transportation lost the advantage of speed in JIT competition with other model carriers, will this proposal shift more transportation out to other models? It is doubtable! Secondly, the maker of legislation says the extra revenue of this tax increase would be use to maintain the river, ”This act will ensure safe, dependable, cost-effective, and environmentally sustainable navigation on our nation’s inland waterway system”. However, water cargo been shift to other models, the environment benefit these cargo been giving out would be gone, so the sustainability is not that absolute in bigger picture, and it is same to safety, and cost-effectiveness, dependability.