If I'm not mistaken we spend more on pensions than we do on transportation.
Are you telling me that we can't tug the belt a little tighter rather than open up a new revenue stream for a government agency?
Short term sure. I'm just saying long term it's a losing battle. We'll have to change the funding model from gas tax to something else or a combination of both.
As people upgrade to more fuel efficient cars, they're effectively giving themselves a tax cut, so keep that in mind. If you drive a car that gets 20 miles per gallon today and 20 years from now your car gets 60 mpg, you reduced your tax burden by 66.7%. Combine that with the fact that people are driving fewer miles on average than they did in the past, so that's pulls even more funds away from the highway fund. Roads construction isn't getting any cheaper, so the loss of funding has to be made up somewhere.
I only put about 15 gallons of gas in my car each month. Most of the people I know my age drive less than 5 miles to work, so we're not contributing much to the maintenance of roads. We're not alone, it's a generational shift.
If the trend continues, highway funds will be billions of dollars short. You can cut some from other programs, but only so much. How do you make up the difference?