Delving into the Election Results: Prospects for Infrastructure Spending

In the days after real estate mogul Donald J. Trump was elected President, I received dozens of phone calls and emails from NATSO members who were excited about the prospects of a Trump Administration. Although there are certainly many reasons why most of NATSO’s membership was pleased with the results on Election Day, high on all of their lists was the fact that Donald Trump advocates a $1 trillion infrastructure investment over the course of a decade.
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NATSO ANALYSIS: President-Elect Trump Supports a $1 Trillion Infrastructure Package.  Is This Necessarily a Good Thing for Travel Plazas and Truckstops?

As the trade association representing the America’s travel plazas and truckstops, NATSO has long supported increased spending on roads and bridges to better facilitate the seamless, efficient movement of people and freight across America’s highways.   Almost 90 percent of NATSO members’ retail outlets are located within one quarter-mile of an Interstate highway.  These businesses rely on an efficient, well-funded surface transportation program to survive.

This sounds like exactly what NATSO has been advocating for many years. It makes sense, therefore, that our members were pleased at the prospect of additional transportation investments.  

But – as with all things – the devil is in the details.

NATSO has not simply advocated for an increase in transportation funding.  We have advocated for an increase in motor fuel excise taxes.  It is counter-intuitive for businesses to support higher taxes on the products that they sell.  But I view the fuel tax the same way Winston Churchill viewed democracy – it is the worst option, except for all of the other options...