A federally funded study being conducted by the University of Iowa will pay drivers $895 to keep track of their driving habits by installing a GPS device on their cars.
Sound like an easy way to make $895? Yeah, we think so, too, but to qualify you have to live in one of six test cities, and there are a limited number of spots. The study will require tracking participants’ every move for eight months.
Basically, what has happened is that as Americans have begun to drive less, thanks to the summer’s high gas prices and the current economic downturn, the funds flowing into the Federal Highway Trust Fund (you know, the arm of government that repairs roads, bridges and all that other infrastructure people want so badly but don’t want to pay taxes for) has dropped precipitously.
Enter the Department of Transportation, which wants to use the Iowa study to determine if a fixed pay-per-mile system would serve as a more reliable source of funds than the gas tax, which is how the FHTF gets its money now.
Check out Iowa’s website to see if you qualify. It helps if you live in San Diego; Baltimore; Austin, Texas; Boise, Idaho; North Carolina; or Iowa.