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Road Usage Charging Comes to the Rockies, Plus 4 Things to Know About RUC

December 7, 2016

Our Azuga Insight team is proud to announce the Colorado Road Usage Charge Pilot Program (Colorado RUCPP) has officially launched! Chosen by the program’s prime consultant, CH2M, Azuga is the exclusive hardware provider and account manager for the state’s 100-vehicle program. Azuga is currently running similar pilots in Oregon and California, and this achievement makes the company the only commercial account manager to run three state projects of this kind!

As in Azuga’s other road usage charging (RUC) programs, participants have options for recording their mileage. Colorado RUCPP participants can select one of two plug-and-play devices to connect to their vehicle to record vehicle miles: a GPS-enabled device (which enables a rich set of extras for participants) and a non-location enabled device. Plus, we’ve added a third option: Colorado RUCPP participants will be the first to try out our new manual mileage collection method using the Azuga Insight mobile app and web portal. This choice is optimal for people with older cars or people who prefer not to plug tracking technology into their vehicle.

4 things you need to know about RUC

If you haven’t heard of RUC before, you’re probably wondering what it is. Or, you may have already heard about states across the U.S. looking into transportation funding alternatives, but you’re not sure what it means. Here are four things you need to know:

Gas tax is failing.

Today’s cars are fuel-efficient, electric vehicles are more popular, and ride sharing is trending upward; hence the transportation revenue brought in via taxes paid per gallon of fuel is diminishing.  

Governments actively seek a funding alternative.

Research has shown that RUC is a promising alternate revenue mechanism.  Government bodies everywhere are carefully building teams and partnering with account managers to help test the efficacy of RUC.

RUC programs are carefully designed for security, privacy, and personal preference.

As with all business-to-government contracts, requirements are strict, involvement rigorous, and rulebooks long. Each program has specific expectations in regard to security of personal information, privacy of participant locations, and the provision of various mileage collection options. For example, California offers several options, including the purchase of a permit based on how many miles a participant expects to drive over a period of time, in addition to GPS-enabled and non-location enabled devices, mobile phone applications, and manual odometer entry options.  

Additional pilots and testing are in the works.

Recently, the U.S. Department of Transportation’s Federal Highway Administration awarded $14.2 million in grants among eight programs to explore alternative revenue mechanisms. The Oregon pilot was awarded $2.1 million to further develop this program.

Needless to say, more programs will be popping up in the not-so-distant future, and Azuga is excited to be leading the pack. Keep your eyes and ears open for more RUC-related news.