Published on behalf of Sussex County Watchdog
In a new radio spot, Franklin Councilwoman Dawn Fantasia explains how New Jersey has failed to pay its way for decades. Since 1988, the Transportation Trust Fund (TTF) has tried to pay for road and bridge maintenance and repair on just 14.5 cents a gallon of gasoline. New road construction and even public transportation costs come out of that 14.5 cents. So do the repairs for local roads -- to offset the need for higher property taxes -- all of it has to come out of the same budget.
Other states -- including every neighboring state -- charge 40 or even 50 cents a gallon of gasoline to pay for the upkeep of their transportation infrastructure. So how has New Jersey done it? It hasn't. Instead of pay-as-you-go, it is borrow-until-you-go-broke in New Jersey.
So now we have borrowed so much that the fund is out of money and it will take the first 10 cents of a proposed per gallon tax on gasoline just to pay the interest on the debt. New Jersey has spent nearly three decades behaving like children with a credit card. Councilwoman Fantasia makes the point that it is time for our elected officials to start acting like adults, raising the money to pay for road and bridge repairs, paying down the debt, being fiscally responsible.