The 2013 Oregon Legislatures passed Senate Bill 810, the first legislation in the United Sates to establish a road usage charge system for transportation funding. SB 810 authorizes the Oregon Department of Transportation to set up a mileage collection system for 5,000 volunteer motorists beginning July 1, 2015. ODOT may assess a charge of 1.5 cents per mile for up to 5,000 volunteer cars and light commercial vehicles and issue a gas tax refund to those participants. This will not be another pilot program but rather the start of an alternate method of generating fuel tax from specific vehicles to pay for Oregon highways.
Senate Bill 810 (pdf)
Fact Sheet (pdf)
2012 Road Usage Charge pilot program findings
The 2012 Road Usage Charge Pilot Project has concluded. The Office of Innovative Partnerships team created a findings report and presented it to the legislature. The team also presented a report on the impacts of a mileage fee in rural and urban settings. Read more about the pilot.
Understanding Oregon's road user charge program
Finding a way to generate sustainable revenues that will maintain and operate the transportation system is a topic of great interest to nearly every state. Many agencies, businesses, elected officials and transportation stakeholders believe a "per mile fee" or a "road usage charge" could help address the projected diminishing revenues, due in part to the fuel efficient vehicles gaining in popularity in Oregon and even around the world.
Oregon, as in many other endeavors, continues to lead the nation in researching ways to ensure motorists driving fuel efficient vehicles support the roads they travel. The Road User Fee Task Force, passed by the 2001 Oregon Legislative Assembly, was created to “develop a revenue collection design funded through user pay methods, acceptable and visible to the public, that ensures a flow of revenue sufficient to annually maintain, preserve and improve Oregon’s state, county and city highway and road system.”
In the past decade, the task force researched and investigated more than two dozen options, and after deciding a road user fee had the most promise, spearheaded a successful pilot in the Portland area that concluded in 2007. That 2007 Mileage Fee pilot proved the concept of a per mile fee was feasible and pinpointed areas that needed more research and testing.
In late 2012, the Oregon Department of Transportation, as directed by the Oregon legislature, began a second road user fee pilot. The pilot concluded in January 2013; ODOT prepared and presented a report to the legislature.