Begin Main Content Area

 Content Editor ‭[2]‬

 Content Editor ‭[1]‬

PennDOT Pathways: Potential Funding Solutions

This page is best viewed in Chrome, Edge or Firefox.

Map of the eastern United States with al of the East Coast highlighted as states traveled by participants of the Eastern Transportation Coalition. Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Washington, D.C., and North Carolina are highlighted as partner states.

MBUF Pilot Project

Pennsylvania is a member of The Eastern Transportation Coalition. The Coalition, formerly known as the I-95 Corridor Coalition, is a partnership of 17 states and the District of Columbia that is advancing the national conversation around mileage-based user fees through real-world pilot programs, education, and outreach.

Pennsylvania was recently featured in a study.

The unique characteristics of the Eastern U.S. — such as significant cross-state travel, numerous toll facilities, and several major truck corridors — make it a natural testing ground for the potential challenges of implementing a MBUF system nationally.

The Coalition is neutral regarding MBUF as the ultimate solution for transportation funding but wants to ensure the voices of citizens along the Eastern U.S. are part of the national discussion.

Click here to access its most recent study and findings.

Studying Mileage-Based User Fees in Pennsylvania

To better understand how to move beyond the gas tax, we started working with The Eastern Transportation Coalition (TETC), a coalition of 17 states and D.C. studying how a mileage-based user fee (MBUF) could affect Eastern U.S. states.

In 2018, we kicked off our first study with TETC. Since then, we have completed three phases of MBUF work with TETC, including pilots with more than 500 Pennsylvanians, public opinion surveys of about 1,000 Pennsylvanians, and a geographic equity analysis of Pennsylvania households. These studies have been important to understanding how an MBUF could affect drivers in our state.

2020-2021: Expanding the Exploration of MBUF

Key Takeaways:

  • Depending on how rates are set, rural drivers in Pennsylvania may fare better with MBUF than they do with the gas tax.
  • Real-world pilots reduce privacy concerns for Pennsylvania drivers.

Passenger Vehicle Pilot

October 2020 — January 2021

70 PA Participants
383 transportation stakeholders in total from Delaware, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Pennsylvania

226,267 miles traveled by PA participants
1.45 million miles traveled in total by participants from all states

National Truck Pilot

October 2020 — March 2021

20 PA Trucks
221 trucks travelling the 48 contiguous states

991,957 miles traveled by PA participants
11 million miles traveled in total by participants from all states

2019: Adding the Public's Voice

Key Takeaways:

  • Pilots help close knowledge gaps about transportation funding by providing real-world experiences about how the transportation system is funded.
  • In general, Pennsylvanians like a pay for what you use model, but they have misperceptions about MBUF's fairness toward some vehicles.

2018-2019: Bringing the Trucking Industry to the Table

Key Takeaways:

  • Bringing the trucking industry's voice to the conversation is essential.
  • Trucks cannot simply be treated as big cars in an MBUF system.

Passenger Vehicle Pilot

July 2019 — October 2019

428 PA Participants
889 members of the general public in total from Delaware and Pennsylvania

1.4 million miles traveled by PA participants
3 million miles traveled in total by participants from all states

Multi-State Truck Pilot

October 2018 — March 2019

55 trucks travelling across 27 states

177,873 miles traveled in PA
1.42 million miles traveled in total by participants from all states

2018: Starting the Conversation

Key Takeaways:

  • GPS-enabled MBUF technologies can accurately record miles driven and the amount of fuel used, and can also differentiate this information by state.
  • Administrative and compliance costs can be incorporated into a per-mile MBUF rate.

Passenger Vehicle Pilot

May 2018 — July 2018

39 PA Participants
155 transportation stakeholders in total from Delaware and Pennsylvania

Approximately 130,000 miles traveled in PA
459,448 miles traveled in total by participants from both states

TEST YOUR MBUF IQ! Ever wonder how much the average Pennsylvanian drives in a year? Or what states already have an active MBUF? Test your knowledge on MBUF by answering these and other questions in PennDOT's "Test Your MBUF IQ" quiz.
TRY THE CALCULATOR! See what your estimated monthly costs might be – based on your vehicle's efficiency and monthly miles driven – when the state gas tax is replaced with a MBUF/RUF. Check out our MBUF Comparison Calculator.

TROC Report

The Transportation Revenue Options Committee reported in 2021 that MBUF presently appears to be among the best long-term funding solution for Pennsylvania, and likely for all or most states.

The TROC report proposed a long-term Commonwealth commitment to positioning and preparing for MBUF by vigorously encouraging supportive federal action, raising public awareness and support, and beginning to lay the groundwork for the technological and other implementation components.

What Are Others Saying About MBUF?

Route Fifty

As More Electric Vehicles Hit Roads, States Look to Replace the Gas Tax

"Taxing drivers for the miles they drive and imposing fuel taxes on electricity sold at commercial chargers are just some of the options states are considering."

Read More
The Center Square

Louisiana officials look for solutions for transportation project funding

"Louisiana will need to rethink how it funds transportation and infrastructure projects in the coming years to find a more stable source amid declining gas tax revenues tied to the shift toward electric vehicles."

Read More
The Center Square

Ohio looking at options to replace gas tax

"Calling the gas tax an unsustainable way to fund transportation infrastructure, the Ohio Department of Transportation is studying its options."

Read More
KGW8 Oregon

Here's how Oregon plans to replace the gas tax as cars go electric

"Road upkeep in Oregon is paid for, in large part, by taxes on gasoline. But with West Coast states banning new gas vehicles by 2035, there's a money problem."

Read More