Tag: ‘gas tax’

While Washington’s Efforts to Fund Roads Go Nowhere, Red States Are Raising Gas Taxes

By :: June 11th, 2015

In about six weeks, federal money to keep the Highway Trust Fund going will once again dry up and Congress will begin its predictable scramble to keep cash flowing to roads, bridges, and transit projects. The reason for the gridlock: Neither Congress nor President Obama is willing to back a gas tax sufficient to fund the program, and […]

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Still On a Road to Nowhere

By :: May 13th, 2015

A short road too often traveled. Federal highway funding is due to expire in about two weeks, and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx says a temporary extension—the 33rd in six years—would “prolong a dangerous status quo of funding infrastructure at a level that has left our transportation system gasping for air.” But Congress is almost certain […]

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Bipartisan or Partisan: Tax Efforts Abound

By :: April 17th, 2015

There’s a bipartisan House effort to double the federal gas tax. It would raise the 18.4 cents-per-gallon tax to about 30 cents, would be inflation adjusted, and would rise again in three years if Congress does not find another way to pay for federal transportation projects. The bill’s sponsors—mostly back-benchers—say it would raise $27.5 billion. […]

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Can Rube Goldberg Save the Highway Trust Fund?

By :: March 16th, 2015

In principle, the Highway Trust Fund (HTF) is simple. Drivers pay a federal gas tax when they purchase fuel, the revenue goes to the HTF, and the federal government sends the dollars to states and local governments for highway and transit programs. But in practice the system is a mess and a new proposal by […]

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Congress May Just “Let It Go” … Until Next Year

By :: December 5th, 2014

Congress might really be home for the holidays. Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden told reporters today that the Senate won’t amend the House-approved bill to revive over 50 expired tax breaks for 2014 only. An up-or-down Senate vote could be held within days. Lawmakers must still sort out what they’ll do about a spending bill—funding […]

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Now is the Perfect Time to Raise Gas Taxes

By :: November 11th, 2014

Let’s see if I have this right: Congress needs to finance highway and transit projects but can’t agree on how. The traditional revenue source is the gasoline tax. Gas prices are at their lowest levels in years and dropping. Consumers would barely notice if they had to pay a bit more now at the pump. […]

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Voters Hate Gas Tax Hikes—That's a Problem for States

By :: November 6th, 2014

On Election Day, Massachusetts voters proved once again that increasing the gas tax is a political loser. And that’s a problem. As I explain in a new Tax Policy Center brief, the federal government and most states have per-unit gas taxes. That is, they tax the number gallons purchased, not the purchase price (as sales […]

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Is It Time To End The Highway Trust Fund Fiction?

By :: July 10th, 2014

Congress is in the midst of another Perils of Pauline political showdown: This time the drama is over how to finance the highway trust fund, which will be unable to pay its bills in a couple of weeks. House Republicans have cooked up one set of gimmicks to keep the money flowing for a few […]

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The Corker-Murphy Gas Tax Hike: A Good Idea Spoiled

By :: June 19th, 2014

Senators Bob Corker (R-TN) and Chris Murphy (D-CT) deserve enormous credit for having the courage to do what few of their colleagues would: Propose to pay for transportation projects by raising the gas tax.  It’s too bad they’d ruin such a sensible, straight-forward idea with a ridiculous budget gimmick. Their bill would hike the gas […]

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Congress Fiddles While Bridges Crumble

By :: April 14th, 2014

It isn’t news that congressional Democrats and Republicans have agreed to spend the time between now and the November elections messaging, rather than legislating. When it comes to domestic policy it has only two real issues on its must-do list: Deciding the fate of 50+ tax breaks that expired last December and figuring out what […]

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