The U.S. Chamber of Commerce Web site reports that Warren Buffett's lieutenant Matthew Rose, the CEO of the Berkshire Hathaway-owned Burlington Northern and Santa Fe railroad, wants to increase the federal gas tax.
Council member Matt Rose, who also is a member of the U.S. Chamber's board of directors and chairman and CEO of BNSF Railway Company, agrees that the private sector is the answer. To get it moving and creating jobs, the government has to get capital into the hands of job creators and invest in infrastructure, according to Rose....
While the council hasn't yet made any infrastructure recommendations, Rose stresses the need to invest in the critical roads, railways, and waterways that facilitate commerce. Adequate investment requires increasing the federal fuel tax, which has remained constant since 1993 and is producing declining revenues due to higher fuel efficiency; allowing toll roads; and tapping private investment, according to Rose. "We've done a poor job of educating the public on how roads are paid for, and now we're paying for it with inaction."
A cynic would say Mr. Rose wants to raise the gas tax because doing so would make trucking, the main competitor to rail freight, comparatively more expensive, and because he is hoping some of the tax money will be used to invest in high-speed rail projects on rights of way that his company owns. I also love how the article in one sentence says the guy "agrees that the private sector is the answer," and in the next sentences goes on to recommend taxing and spending.