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Prospectus Blog Four Steps To A Nationwide Vehicle Mileage Tax

Editor’s Note: Cascadia Prospectus is pleased to welcome as a contributor Bern Grush, chief scientist and founder of SkyMeter Corp., who in periodic posts will share insights on road user charging technology and other aspects of surface transportation and system pricing.
Worldwide, the need to toll roads is increasing, whether for sustainable funding, transportation demand management, or emissions management. While this includes the usual toll by segment approach using radio frequency identification (RFID) or dedicated short-wave radio communication (DSRC) many transportation planners are looking to wide-area methods such as Vehicle Miles Traveled (VMT) in the United States and Time, Distance and Place (TDP) in the EU. This trend will almost inevitably continue, with the end result approaching universal tolling and presumably the abandonment of fuel taxes.
The technology to provide “one road-use meter/one bill” is ready now, and tax policy is now being considered by many transport thought leaders. But methods to migrate from fuel tax with free access to “pay for use” over wide jurisdictions such as states, provinces or countries are less well understood.
This paper will look at the new enabling technology and propose a four-stage approach that can help us migrate from fuel tax plus segment tolling, to uniform network-wide pricing.
Read full paper here. (First presented as “Moving From Road Road Pricing To Network Pricing,” at ITS Asia 2009.)