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Economic and equity effects of transportation utility fees

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Abstract

Transportation utility fees are a financing mechanism for transportation that treats the network as a utility and bills properties in proportion to their use, rather than their value as with the property tax. This connects the costs of maintaining the infrastructure more directly to the benefits received from mobility and access to the system. The fees are based on trips generated and vary with land use. This paper evaluates the fees as an alternative funding source in terms of economic, equity and administrative effects. The experiences of cities currently using utility fees for transportation are discussed. Calculations are included to determine the fee levels necessary for transportation maintenance budget needs in three sample cities and a county in the Twin Cities metropolitan area. Proposed fees for each property type are compared to current property tax contributions toward transportation. The regressive effects of the fees and the effect of adjusting for the length of trips generated are also quantified.

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File URL: http://nexus.umn.edu/Papers/TransportationUtilityFees.pdf
File Function: first version, 2009
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Paper provided by University of Minnesota: Nexus Research Group in its series Working Papers with number 000065.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Publication status: Published in working paper
Handle: RePEc:nex:wpaper:transportationutilityfees

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Postal: Dept. of Civil Engineering, 500 Pillsbury Drive SE, Minneapolis, MN 55455
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Web page: http://nexus.umn.edu
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Keywords: tax; land value; locational analysis; transportation finance;

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  1. Shoup, Donald C, 2003. "Truth in Transportation Planning," University of California Transportation Center, Working Papers qt999346pn, University of California Transportation Center.
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