Friday, May 30, 2008

Fuel prices are at record highs and the city of Springfield is considering charging households a road maintenance fee

The Registerguard-

A committee of residents appointed earlier this year by mayor Sid Leiken with the help of the 11 member task force, has concluded that by charging everyone with a Springfield address fee for road maintenance dubbed " street preservation fee" of $1.75 per month could raise up to one million dollars annually.

According to assistant public works Director Len Goodwin, larger stores that generate a great deal of traffic could wind up paying several hundred dollars per year in road maintenance fees.
“If we do not address the issue here and now, we will address the issue in the future in a much more severe way,” committee member Neal Zoumboukos told councilors. “We must be proactive.”

Other recommendations for raising money included raising the city gas tax (yeah right), a property tax levy and studded tire fees.
“We would lose a tremendous amount of credibility if we put a gas tax (increase) out right now,” Leiken said. “The option presented by the task force is something I’m very interested in pursuing.”

The main cause of the street funding dilemma was from the loss of funds from Federal timber county payments.

So far according to the league of Oregon cities, 19 cities in the state are collecting local fees to fund road repairs.

Gosh Batman, I think I know where we can get $49,000,000… Oh I'm sorry, that money is reserved for the EmX.


Blogger OregonGuy said...

Ya know, lightrail up Santa Clara would make sense.

Ya know.

8:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

There is one important missed in your post. Springfield's backlog is $4 million and Eugene's is nearing $200 million. It seems to me one city manages their budget just a little bit better than the other. I more inclinded to believe Sid Leiken on budgetary matters than Kitty Piercy anyday.

5:14 PM  
Blogger Robin said...

I agree with Anon, Springfield does budget a whole lot better then Eugene.
In fact, Eugene could learn a lot from Springfield.

I will admit that I was surprised that Springfield would even consider adding a separate "road usage fee".

Both communities are good at finding solutions if given a chance… The problem is especially with Eugene, Especially with Eugene City Council which has proven repeatedly that they cannot be trusted.

As for light rail… In my opinion light rail between Eugene and Portland would make a lot of sense, but not just for Eugene or Eugene to Springfield.

If you really want speed things up as they did the sixth and seventh street a long time ago, synchronize the traffic lights to reduced timeouts.

Put longer turnout Lanes on freeways. I've noticed that the majority of the bottlenecks occur when people are slowing to exit the freeway and /or traffic gets back up onto the freeways from the traffic lights on the first connecting streets.

Mass transit would however work if it was properly planned. Spending millions of dollars on a special bus system does not make much sense when there are more economical alternatives such as the "breeze" buses.

Having something fancy is nice, however, not always practical.

9:16 PM  
Blogger OregonGuy said...

At a time when I lived and worked in Eugene..and Portland...I thought a lot about transit rail on the I-5 corridor.

I think it still boils down to people preferring to drive themselves. It allows for a great deal more flexibility. And there aren't enough people who would demand point-to-point delivery throughout the course of the day to sustain hourly trains.

Contrast this with trains in Europe. While I'm not saying they make money either, there is a convenience in the frequency that they are scheduled. Want to get off at Venizia for a couple of hours? Then reboard for an overnight to Budapest? It's affordable. It's fun.

But we tend to forget that passenger rail service between these points has existed for more than a hundred years and still struggles to break-even.

Rail seems a good idea...that the economics just don't support. Like many ideas that are "good".

12:49 PM  
Blogger : JustaDog said...

So let me get this right - some poor widow barely making ends meet in her little home with no vehicles will be charged $1.75/month while a neighbor down the block with 4 cars, a big heavy boat, and a big motor home that just sits in the street most of the time will also be charged $1.75/month.

Behold the "fairness" of the Progressive government.

Sieg hail!

9:50 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


I don't believe this is what the city is going to do but instead came from a citizen task force the mayor put together. I believe one of the members that voted for the fee is a person that is disabled, on a fixed income, and does not drive.

7:43 AM  
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