Oberstar Proposes New Fees

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

The House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure released the statement of Representative James Oberstar (D-MN) before the Subcommittee on Select Revenue Measures of the House Committee on Ways and Means. In his statement, Representative Oberstar, who chairs the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure, proposes various financing options for the Highway Trust Fund.

Among the options is a proposal to raise the excise tax by $1 per barrel on crude oil and refined gasoline and diesel. Also proposed is a fee of $10 on every twenty-foot equivalent unit (TEU) container moving through a US port. There is also a proposal for a freight waybill tax (sales tax) of 0.1% on freight shipping costs. The excise tax proposal would raise an estimated $24 billion over six years. The container fee proposal would raise an estimated $3 billion over six years. The proposed freight waybill tax would raise an estimated $740 million annually. Representative Calvert (R-CA) issued a news release stating that he is proposing an alternative plan that would impose a fee according to the value of each shipment moving through a US port. The fee would amount to 0.075% of the value of a shipment, but would not exceed $500. The fee could generate tens of billions of dollars over the next five years. (7/23/09).

(Source: Bryant’s Maritime News)

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