It's about time.
Gov. Tom Corbett plans to announce a transportation-funding plan next week, nearly a year and a half after a task force he created recommended a menu of options for dealing with Pennsylvania's backlog of road and bridge repairs.
The Associated Press reported the news, citing two unidentified sources who said the key to the plan will be removing a cap on gasoline taxes paid by fueling stations.
This isn't a new idea; it was one of a dozen recommendations in the task force's August 2011 report.
Corbett mentioned the plan again last November, when he said prices at the pump are driven by many factors and removing the cap on franchise gas tax wouldn't necessarily translate to an increase at the pump.
Here's a not-so-wild prediction: If gas companies can recoup some or all of that tax from our pockets, they will.
We understand we have to pay for our transportation needs, which are now underfunded by about $3.5 billion. And delaying the projects any longer will only increase the inevitable costs as the roads and bridges continue to deteriorate.
AP's sources say removing the tax cap for wholesale gasoline would raise about $2 billion a year toward that maintenance, as well as for supporting public transportation.
We don't know all of the details of Corbett's plan, which is expected to be unveiled at a press conference Thursday, but we hope there's more to it than this.
Pump prices will likely increase if the gas tax is uncapped, and we all know how volatile gas prices already are.
Still, people will pay it -- not just because they have little choice, but hopefully because they understand this is a safety issue that affects all of us.
But the task force had plenty of other suggestions for raising revenue, such as increasing the costs for vehicle registration and driver's license renewals, but doubling the time between renewals.
Another cost-cutting recommendation is to eliminate registration stickers on license plates, and reducing the number of driver's license centers from 71 to 60, which would save the state $650,00 a year, and to do away with new-car inspections.
A bit worrisome is the fact top GOP lawmakers who control the state House and Senate claim not to know details about the plan Corbett, also a Republican, will propose.
These folks aren't bystanders; they are lawmakers, and they should have been involved since Day 1.
If the governor's plan isn't thorough and balanced, these men and women shouldn't waste a minute producing one that is.