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107 The charging of administrative fees and/or the criminaliza- for work, education, or shopping. The general trend among the tion of toll violations. systems examined has been a temporary reduction in conges- tion that has typically returned to historical levels over time. These practices and ongoing trends will continue to have With the reduction in traffic, there has been a related decline an impact on the costs of toll collection, administration, and in vehicle emissions. Given the recent implementation of these enforcement. systems, it is too early to determine whether this is a sustain- able trend or merely a short-term effect. Another potential issue is the economic impact of cordon price zones, particu- 6.1.3 VMT Fees larly on retailers within the zone who rely on outside traffic for With VMT systems, there are substantial trade-offs between business. In studies conducted by the operating agencies, it has system capabilities, cost, and complexity. The simple systems generally been found that the implementation of the cordon just keep track of total miles traveled. Somewhat more complex zone areas have not had a negative impact. systems keep track of mileage by geographic area. The most complex systems are those that also require identification of 6.1.5 Parking Pricing class of road. Aside from the need for more detailed infor- mation, the potential for error in identifying roads typically Each of the three systems presented in Chapter 2 illustrates requires additional capabilities to improve accuracy. a different approach to parking price management: Any system to collect revenue will be subject to evasion and avoidance behavior. Both may be relevant in terms of evaluat- In Westminster, the municipal government manages park- ing a VMT system. Some systems will be designed to induce ing directly; avoidance (e.g., congestion pricing systems), but others may In San Francisco, a partnership of agencies led by SFMTA is induce inefficient behavior. For example, a system like that managing the parking pricing system; and proposed in Oregon, which charges by the mile in state but has In Chicago, the responsibility for parking management has no charge for out-of-state mileage, could induce a driver to been handed over to a private party. make a long trip on the other side of the Washington border. This would reduce the amount of the mileage fee owed to Ore- In some regions (e.g., Westminster), parking pricing sys- gon without affecting the gas tax rebate. Evasion is a larger tems have been combined with cordon or congestion pric- problem. With a GPS-based system, this might be accom- ing to provide support to congestion management. Drivers plished by blocking the antenna to prevent signal acquisition. heading into a city with cordon tolls not only must pay the Since signals may be problematic in some areas, such as those toll to enter the city but must additionally pay parking rates with large buildings or forests, it may be difficult to determine that reflect the demand for the space chosen. When faced whether there has been purposeful interference or a natural with congestion and parking charges, drivers may consider problem. the trade-offs of public transit versus the personal vehicle, There must be a mechanism for audit and reconciliation potentially creating a synergistic effect that reduces conges- if there are differences between the amount that the system tion in urban areas. Therefore, this approach may affect charges a motorist and his or her view of what the charge the amount of revenues generated from parking systems should be. due to reduced demand for private vehicles entering into the city and using its parking areas. The impact of combin- ing congestion management techniques would need to be 6.1.4 Cordon Pricing carefully analyzed for any city or other jurisdiction consid- In the implementation of cordon pricing systems, the largest ering implementation. single roadblock has typically involved political rather than technological concerns. A number of the systems considered in 6.2 Costs to Administer the this report began as pilot programs and were later adopted Current and Alternative (e.g., Stockholm) or discarded (e.g., Hong Kong) after public Revenue-Generation Systems sentiment was considered. The major issues that have been Examined in This Report raised to date include user costs, capital costs, fairness, enforce- ment, and privacy concerns. Cordon charge systems have Based on the methodology outlined in Chapter 4 of this generated considerable debate, especially in regard to the fee report, the following conclusions have been drawn regarding assessed on local residents living within the zone compared the compliance, administrative, and enforcement costs asso- with the fee imposed on nonresidents living in suburban areas ciated with motor fuel taxes, tolling, VMT fees, congestion/ who travel into the congestion price zone during peak hours cordon pricing, and parking pricing.