We've been asked one question repeatedly lately (due to a vote by SANDAG on 9/23/22): Is the Road Usage Charge (RUC) dead? No Virginia, the road usage charge isn't dead ... it's just hibernating. While there had been strong support to implement a road usage charge model into SANDAG's 2021 Regional Plan, key board members - particularly City of San Diego Mayor Todd Gloria - had a change of heart and became strong advocates in opposition to it.
Despite this, the VMT mileage tax is alive and well. And you can infer that it isn't going anywhere when Toks Omishakin, the state’s secretary of transportation, says that it's inevitable. Any regional pause is just that - a pause - until a new study from SANDAG comes out in a year. When it does, they'll surely revisit the issue.
Why the advocacy for removal of the Road Usage Charge now? Is it really benevolence towards consumers, or could the Mid-term Elections be at play here? Only the passage of time will tell. For now, the RUC isn't dead -- it's only in hibernation.
Published on 10/9/2022