Hannah Lutz:

In July, Oregon will implement the first such alternative.
 Oregon is giving its drivers a choice: pay the gas tax at the pump or pay a flat 1.5 cents per mile driven.
 “Fuel efficiency is getting better and better, which is great,” said Michelle Godfrey, an Oregon Department of Transportation spokeswoman. But “when your road maintenance is funded by fuel sales, that spells trouble.”
 Oregon’s Department of Transportation has teamed up with road-tolling company Sanef ITS Technologies America Inc., the Long Island, N.Y., unit of a French company, and connected car company Intelligent Mechatronic Systems Inc., of Waterloo, Ontario. As many as 5,000 registered vehicle owners in Oregon will be able to join the program starting July 1.
 Legislation setting up the system initially limited participation to 5,000 volunteers “to see how the public would accept the program,” Godfrey said.
 Here’s how it works.
 Intelligent Mechatronic Systems will provide a device that plugs into a vehicle’s on-board diagnostics port to gather mileage data used to determine the usage charge.