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Story Title: HOV Lanes but no Carpool Advertisement, Weird....
"It's a weird thing", Watkins said. "They(carpool lanes) are out there, but we don't have any particular program promoting it."
Not such a wierd thing if you look at the economics. I am sure there is a special sales tax dedicated to the TTA. And about 20% of that is from the sale of New Vehicles. Gasoline is extra. So, the more cars on the road the more tax. And if you are in traffic, then more gas per mile. More tax per mile.
The HOV lane was born in the 70's. Federal Highway Funding was designed around it in the Carter Administration. The country was in a recession in the late 70's and when Administrations changed, the attitude with carpooling went with it. In the early 80's incentives were removed from carpooling. At the same time, the Regional Transportation Authorities were given the "management" of transportation projects on their highways. Often these projects were HOV lane construction projects. Very big ticket construction projects.
Meanwhile the same Regional Transportation Authorities are given the special sales tax revenues. Where I am it is about 1.5% of County Sales. And given the oversight of Carpool services that help people find each other to form carpools.
And guess what has happened? The cost of construction has skyrocketed. The cost of administration has skyrocketed. Many of those special taxes have been increased across the nation. Meanwhile the funding for marketing of carpooling has deeply diminished. And Carpooling went from 1.20 people per car in 1980 to 1.09 today. That is about a 10% jump in cars on the road due to lack of regional transportation authorities support.
So, Why should they advertise using the carpool lanes? It will just reduce the revenue that they so deeply depend on because they can't get their costs of construction and administration under control.
TrafficBulldog.org is a commuter advocacy group committed to helping people form carpools. For reasons like the fact that we have about 44 years of oil left and current world consumption rates. Would you like to help your grandchildren have a hot dinner? Or even a warm shower?