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—
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
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
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
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
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 months.
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
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