Truck only lanes.

AP: Dept. of Transportation holds meetings on trucks-only lanes

DALTON, Ga. — The Georgia Department of Transportation is considering building trucks-only lanes on the state’s interstate highways and other roads to help handle what’s expected to be a big increase in freight moved.

DOT spokeswoman Carrie Hamblin said that 940 million tons of freight moved across Georgia’s highways and interstates in 2004. By 2035, that number is expected to double.

“We know we’ve got to plan how we are going to move that freight across the state,” she said.

As the department studies creating the new lanes – not taking over existing lanes – it’s holding public meetings this month to get comments on the idea.

The first meeting will be Monday in Dalton at the Northwest Georgia Trade and Convention center from 5 to 7 p.m.

I wonder how expensive this might be? Building freeways is very expensive. That being said, separating cars and trucks might be a good idea.

25 comments

  1. Icarus says:

    Most sides involved like the concept of this issue. The problem, as always, is in the details.

    Most of the solutions proposed have involved truckers having toll lanes. The trucking industry is actually O.K. with that, as long as the truck-only lanes are voluntary.

    I read last week that one proposal has the toll lanes as “madatory” for truckers. The trucking assoication won’t go for it, and they rightfully point out that they are already the highest taxed form of transportation.

    So, if we all think it’s a good idea, are we all willing to cough up the tax money to pay for it? Or do we force it on the industry, and have them pass it through the supply chain and have us pay for it in higher prices?

    I’m betting we can send it back to a study committee for a few more years. Let’s wait until the transportation system actually gets bad before we get serious about alternative solutions. (please note sarcasm).

  2. Demonbeck says:

    The State/DOT needs to look seriously into telecommuting incentives.

    Instead of building rail and roads, why not just cut down on the number of people commuting each morning and afternoon?

  3. Doug Deal says:

    Demon,

    Yay! More government figuring out what’s best for us and using the tax code or appropriations to change out behavior!!!

  4. Demonbeck says:

    “More government figuring out what’s best for us and using the tax code or appropriations to change out behavior!”

    No, the government – who is in charge of maintaining the roads in question – would be providing incentives for businesses to use telecommuting as an alternative to commuting to work. Businesses could decide not to follow.

    Telecommuting would cut down on the number of cars on the road. Emissions into the environment and demand for fuel. As a result, our air would be cleaner, our roads less clogged and gas would be cheaper. Telecommuting is a business enabler, not an inhibitor.

  5. Demonbeck says:

    Also, with less traffic on the roads, the DOT would have to spend less maintaining our current system. The savings would more than easily offset the tax incentives.

    This, of course, would not be the answer to all problems.

  6. Doug Deal says:

    I agree that businesses should allow more flexible work schedules (where possible) and allow telecommuting (where possible), but the government needs to do less of the “providing for incentives” that has gotten into the current mess we are in with the tax code and pork.

    I thought you wanted a simpler tax code and less intrusive government. I guess I had you confused with someone else.

  7. Demonbeck says:

    Apples and Oranges Doug Deal.

    In a perfect world, the tax code would be simplified. Until it is, I think our government should incentivize telecommuting.

    Under the current tax structure, I don’t think there can be enough pro-business tax incentives. This would be one.

  8. Doug Deal says:

    Demon,

    Then one cannot complain when the Libs want tax incentives of their own. If everyone is going to find an exception where they think special perks in taxes and appropriations are ok, then tax/governmental reform will never happen.

    You have to personally stop looking to the government for answers if you want others to stop looking to the government for answers.

  9. Demonbeck says:

    “Then one cannot complain when the Libs want tax incentives of their own. If everyone is going to find an exception where they think special perks in taxes and appropriations are ok, then tax/governmental reform will never happen.

    You have to personally stop looking to the government for answers if you want others to stop looking to the government for answers. ”

    So you are saying that because I disagree with how the game is played, I should sit out of it completely until they change the rules?

    The players playing the game are the ones who usually decide when and how to change the rules.

    I believe government’s role in all of this should remain as an enabler for business. Currently, the best way for our government to do that is through providing tax incentives to businesses.

    When tax reform is pushed through, government will have to find a new way to provide a fertile environment for business in this state.

  10. Doug Deal says:

    If you “play the game” you are part of the problem, and thus part of the momentum that has to be overcome.

    Everyone else who is “playing the game” thinks they are the ones that have secret knowledge about how to properly use the government to manipulate others.

    You big government types are all the same.

  11. Demonbeck says:

    LOL, that’s funny right there.

    I’d be happy to divulge any “knowledge” I have regarding to “playing the game” to anyone and everyone. It’s not that difficult to figure out.

    The fact of the matter is, though, that we must continue to push for tax reform while pushing for tax incentives under the current system. We must continue to strive for a better environment for Georgia businesses because they create revenue for the state. The better our state’s businesses fare, the less my burden must be to pay for government’s necessary functions.

    Until the tax reform happens though, we shouldn’t simply stop improving what we’ve got.

  12. Doug Deal says:

    This was posted by Demonbeck in the thread about Rudy and his abortion stance due to topic creep.

    In what I think is a mutual agreement to discuss Demonbecks particular stance on conservative principles in this thread, I have reposted it here, so I can then post my reply.

    I am not “supporting bigger and more intrusive government (in this case, the state), but excusing it because (I) like the outcome.”

    I am supporting smaller government that is less intrusive and provides a positive environment for business growth. My idea to provide tax breaks to businesses who telecommute would be completely voluntary for businesses but would also cut down on the government’s need for maintenance revenues for the state’s transportation system. In essence, it cuts down on the size of government twice.

    If I were for bigger and more intrusive government, I would be calling for government mandates on telecommuting.

    I still support tax reform, but, unlike you, I believe that our elected officials can continue to improve the current system while working to reform it at the same time.

    So if the pursuit of smaller government and a better environment for businesses in this state portray a lack of conservative principles on my part – then so be it. I’ll bet a majority of folks don’t see it the same as you.

    – Demonbeck (ed)

  13. Doug Deal says:

    Whether it is voluntary incentive or a “mandate”, your proposal has the same result, more intrusive government.

    When the government starts giving tax breaks or grants or whatever to private business, they are interfering with the competitive balance in the free market. Behavior is modified just as certainly as it would be if it was mandatory.

    In highly competitive industries, the government is in effect picking winners and losers by who behaves the way they have pre-selected.

    What if the Democrats were back in charge in Georgia and decided that they would give tax credits to companies that fired employees who owned guns?

    One could easily hold the belief, as you do with telecommuting subsidies, that government intervention here is a good thing because they think it has a desirable result. Besides, the incentive is for voluntary compliance.

    Forget the fact that it could tilt competitive balance to the point where the state effective outlaws guns.

    Just because you think the result would be just and good, does not mean everyone else views it in the same regard. Your obviously beneficial incentive may be nothing more than corporate welfare in their eyes.

    How do you then, with any form of credibility, tell them that their various incentives or “investments” are undesirable?

  14. Demonbeck says:

    If by “intrusive” you mean “get out of the way” then I guess you are correct.

    Government’s role in this society is to provide the greatest amount of freedom possible to the greatest number of people. The principle of freedom is not thrown out completely because criminals are locked up for victimless crimes.

    You may believe that some drugs should be legalized. However, until that happens, I wouldn’t question your motives for trying to minimize the sentences or create more opportunities for people to enjoy those drugs. Nor would I say that you working against the legalization cause.

    At some point government infringes upon our lives. It’s a necessary evil. It is also a basic human right to strive to minimalize the extent to which it does so.

    If it working to see that governmental expenses are decreased and their impact on businesses is as small as possible is not conservative, then call me a communist. Until you can prove to me that decreasing the size, impact and needs of our government on our everyday lives is not a step in the “smaller government” direction tough, I am not going to agree with you.

  15. Doug Deal says:

    Commrade Demon,

    You believe the ends justify the means, and that is your right. Just don’t be so critical of others who feel different ends are justified by different means. I will, however, criticize your both.

  16. Demonbeck says:

    It’s human nature to criticize those that are wrong (ie. those who do not agree with me.)

  17. Demonbeck says:

    I never have a problem with people criticizing me. If I did, I would have never gotten married.

  18. Demonbeck says:

    If we didn’t wish anything but the best for our state, we would be so passionate about the issues facing it.

    It’s very rare that someone’s criticism bothers me.

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