May 12, 2015

Congress Isn’t Raising The Gas Tax, But These States Are

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May 12, 2015 | The National Journal | Jason Plautz and Libby Isenstein

Unless Congress passes an extension, the federal Highway Trust Fund will soon run out of money. This story from the National Journal says the fund is on track to run dry at the end of the month.

“A short-term extension is almost a certainty, but the House and Senate can’t even decide whether the extension should run a few months or through the end of the year, let alone how to pay for it,” write authors Plautz and Isenstein.

There are select congressman advocating an increase in the federal gas tax, but it’s highly unlikely to move forward. That is in sharp contrast to about a dozen states that have already passed or are considering a hike in the state tax.

The story points out these gas tax increases are being led by Republican-controlled states such as Iowa, Utah and Idaho.

We at Inside Energy have been reporting on this issue, and on the growing perception that more fuel-efficient cars and younger generations driving less are leading to an unsustainable future for a gas tax funded transportation infrastructure. Colorado, for instance, is considering different funding mechanisms, including potentially charging for the mileage Colorado residents drive, rather than the amount of gas they buy.