In The News: Transportation

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Steady stream of studies fuel transportation debates

Sep 30 2017

By Adam Vacarro, The Boston Globe

And the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation said the state needs to have a better plan to confront challenges, including from climate changes and the loss of gas tax money as more vehicles become electric-powered. And in response to the Taxpayers Foundation report, the Baker administration this week said it would form a commission to study funding and infrastructure challenges.
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Transportation Reports Still Don't Answer Money Questions

Sep 30 2017

By Bob Salsberg, AP / U.S. News and World Report

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation strongly suggests that just throwing money at problems isn't enough. While the state, in the 10 years since the finance commission's report, has doubled capital expenditures for transportation, "asset conditions of state and local roads and bridges remain problematic despite capital spending amounting to billions of dollars more than the (commission) projected would be available," the report stated.
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Self-driving cars speed ahead without legislative framework

Sep 29 2017

By Colin Young, State House News Service / The Salem News

Ford is developing a fully autonomous vehicle — no steering wheel, brake or gas pedals, and no driver required — by 2021, Ford Smart Mobility's director of city solutions Jessica Robinson said Wednesday at a transportation forum hosted by the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation. Robinson was joined Wednesday by Corey Ershow, transportation policy manager for Lyft, who said partnerships like the one his company announced with Ford will be critical to the development of autonomous cars because they can better deliver on their potential as part of a ride-sharing network.
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New Massachusetts commission to review state's transportation needs

Sep 27 2017

By Shira Schoenberg, MassLive

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation report also found that factors such as climate change, ride-sharing services, electric vehicles and self-driving cars will affect state revenues. For example, if fewer people buy cars, Massachusetts will get less money from registration fees. More fuel-efficient cars means the state will lose gas tax money.
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Baker to form commission to review transportation needs

Sep 27 2017

By Colin Young, State House News Service / The Salem News

The taxpayers foundation this week released a report critical of the state for not having a updated blueprint of how it is going to address transportation infrastructure and financing needs in the next decade, saying such a blueprint is desperately needed given the advances in technology and climate change. Baker will sign the order "in the coming weeks" to create a commission to "further review, analyze and better inform the state's transportation capital needs," Polito said, and to look at how state revenues – the gas tax and vehicle registration fees, for instance – could shift along with changes in transportation and technology.
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Is more money needed to fix Massachusetts transportation?

Sep 27 2017

By Shira Schoenberg, MassLive

On Tuesday, the business-backed Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation released a report arguing that more money alone will not fix Massachusetts' transportation problems. Rather, the report said there needs to be a full review of the state's transportation assets to figure out what the system needs and how it should be funded.
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Editorial: One transportation study that's really needed

Sep 27 2017

Newburyport Daily News

The foundation is pressing for a complete, detailed picture of the transportation system. Gov. Charlie Baker and the Legislature, it says, would be hobbled by “an incomplete inventory of assets and their conditions, inconsistent project management and/or inefficient spending, and a lack of metrics to monitor progress.” Similarly, last year, the foundation cited the “inferior” data used by the MBTA to keep track of all its assets, poor management of projects and large purchases, and a “lack of accountability regarding how the money is spent.”
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MASS. TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM NEEDS INDEPENDENT REVIEW, BIZ GROUP SAYS

Sep 26 2017

By Michael Norton, State House News Service

The state needs a new blueprint to address its transportation infrastructure, which faces new threats and remains in problematic condition despite major investments in recent years, according to a business-backed foundation that is recommending a new independent review. "What is clear is that the state lacks the requisite information to make profoundly difficult choices," the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation concluded in its report. "Questions such as which projects to fund and when, and how revenue sources should be allocated must be included as part of a long-term sustainable transportation finance plan to address our transportation needs. Unfortunately, the state has not yet adopted such a plan."
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Transit chief wants ‘world class’ system for MBTA

Aug 15 2017

AP / The Telegram

The Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, an independent watchdog group, welcomed the appointment of Ramirez. “Mr. Ramirez’s business background and expertise in complex turnarounds makes him the ideal person to lead the authority forward,” President Eileen McAnneny said.
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Shortsleeve move to T board opposed

Jun 6 2017

By Bruce Mohl, CommonWealth Magazine

Andrew Bagley, vice president of the Massachusetts Taxpayers Foundation, also voiced support for Shortsleeve, saying “he’s brought stability to the organization.”
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