Is your state transportation budget running on fumes?
That’s the colorful metaphor most commonly employed when budget writers gather to discuss money for roads and bridges. It elicits a mental picture of a vehicle sputtering to the side of the road, the fuel needle shivering near empty. We then shift to the lone traveler marching down a deserted desert highway, a rusty red can in one hand, wiping at their sweaty brow with the other, over a miserably maintained stretch of crumbling asphalt.
Armed with such mental imagery, legislators line up with their tin cups begging for more gas taxes to fix the crumbling infrastructure.