Climate Measure Would Raise Gas Tax But Not Fund Transportation

A new senate climate measure is proposing to raise the gas tax, a move many in the transportation field have been suggesting for years. But the measure is meeting criticism for not directing the increased revenue towards transportation projects.

"The climate measure being crafted by Sens. John Kerry (D-MA), Lindsey Graham (R-SC), and Joseph Lieberman (I-CT) is not expected to hit the street until Earth Day later this month. But with Graham indicating that a significant portion of the legislation's new gas fee would be repaid to consumers via rebates, the group of eight senators questioned the effectiveness of adding new fuel charges without attempting to make the nation's existing infrastructure more efficient."

A group of eight senators has voiced opposition to the plan. In addition, a coalition of 27 transportation groups have written to the measure's three authors to try to get the revenue from their proposed gas tax increased directed at transportation infrastructure projects.

Full Story: Would the New Senate Fuel Tax Deal a Death Blow to the Transport Bill?



Irvin Dawid's picture

Gas carbon fees are not gas taxes

I have seen these debates before.
Politicians, unable to raise gas taxes on their own because of fear of political repercussions, go elsewhere for the funding. In this case, a climate bill is in the works that will exempt fuels from the cap and trade mechanism and instead levy an indirect carbon fee that may be revenue neutral, according to one of its authors, Sen. Graham.
The 8 Senators are demanding it be used for transportation - but that's not what this fee is about. It is not a traditional gas tax. If the Senators are so concerned about transportation infrastructure, let them join with Congressman Oberstar and call for a long overdue increase in the gas tax.
Irvin Dawid, Palo Alto, CA

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