Pared-Back House HUR Bill Moves, With Small Steps Forward for Local Roads

The House Environment and Transportation Committee voted out an amended version of its Highway User Revenues bill, HB 1187. The amended bill would defer the looming “cliff” until FY 2027, but provide only modest funding increases in the years ahead.

Local leaders support infrastructure funding at March 9 Senate bill hearing

Voting only one day after the bill’s public hearing, the House Committee voted on the top initiative bill for both MACo and the Maryland Municipal League (MML) this session — proposed as a full restoration of Highway User Revenues effective in FY 2025, timed to allow a “smooth landing” with federal infrastructure funds becoming available for roads and bridges, among other things. The changes to the bill were described at the work session as “leadership amendments.”

The amended bill, supported unanimously by the committee, would realign the funding shares for the three local stakeholders as follows:

  • Municipal Governments currently receive 2.0% of the fund – their full restoration level is 2.6%. The House-amended bill would increment their share by 0.1% in each of FY 23 through FY 26, until they reached a maximum funding level of 2.4% (which is about 92% of full funding).
  • County Governments currently receive 3.2% of the fund – their full restoration level is 15.3%. The House-amended bill would increment their share by 0.1% in each of FY 23 through FY 26, until they reached a maximum funding level of 3.6% (which is just under 24% of full funding).
  • Baltimore City, with its unique responsibility to maintain even State roads in its area, currently receives 8.3% of the fund – their full restoration level is 12.1%. The House-amended bill would increment their share by 0.2-0.3% in each of FY 23 through FY 26, until they reached a maximum funding level of 9.4% (which is just under 78% of full funding, but nearly $60 million short, more than any jurisdiction by far).
  • The “Cliff Effect” in current law would reset these local percentages all the way back to their 2010 levels, a dramatic drop even from the current funding level. HB 1187 proposed to eliminate the cliff altogether. The House-amended bill would defer the cliff effect until FY 2027, but after the four-year period ahead, the same stark funding reset is retained in State law.

HB 1187 will be debated on the floor of the House on Tuesday. The Senate crossfile, SB 726, was heard on Wednesday, March 9, but has not yet received any Senate action.

Read prior Conduit Street coverage:

MACo Members From Across Maryland Testify to Fully Restore Local Infrastructure Funding

Read MACo’s testimony on its top priority bill.

Michael Sanderson

Executive Director Maryland Association of Counties
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