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California would increase fuel taxes under $52 billion road repair plan


Sharon Bernstein
FILE PHOTO: Gasoline drips off a nozzle during refueling at a gas station in Altadena, California March 24, 2012.
REUTERS/Mario Anzuoni| SACRAMENTO, Calif.

California would increase gasoline taxes and other transportation-related fees for the first time in decades to fund an ambitious $52 billion plan to repair the state's sagging infrastructure under a deal announced Wednesday.

The deal between fiscally moderate Democratic Governor Jerry Brown and leaders of the majority Democrat legislature would increase the excise tax on gasoline by 12 cents per gallon from the current $0.28, and on diesel fuel by 20 cents per gallon, among other fees, over 10 years to pay for repairs to roads and bridges as well as for anti-congestion projects.

"Let's be clear - our roads suck," said Assembly Speaker Anthony Rendon, who represents blue-collar suburbs south of Los Angeles at a news conference announcing the deal. "Our bridges are crumbling and traffic takes time away from our families. Delays cost businesses money."

California's transportation systems have languished unrepaired and unexpanded for decades, as budget constraints and politics have stymied plans by Democrats and Republicans alike.

Brown, a fiscal moderate credited with bringing the state back from a $27 billion budget gap, has refused to sign on to plans that involve borrowing money, and Republicans and some moderate Democrats have resisted raising gasoline taxes.

But the same Democratic wave that led California to go two-for-one in favor of former presidential candidate Hillary Clinton last November gave the party a two-thirds majority in both houses of the legislature, enough to pass new taxes without Republican support.

The deal won support of construction companies and labor unions, and Democratic lawmakers on Wednesday put up a unified front on what had been a divisive issue over raising taxes.

Under it, owners of electric vehicles would have to pay a $100 fee to help repair roads even though they don't use gasoline and would not pay the gas tax. The fees and taxes would raise about $5.2 billion per year.

Republicans condemned the plan, saying transportation taxes and fees were already among the highest in the country.

"The transportation proposal announced by the Capitol Democrats is a costly and burdensome plan that forces ordinary Californians to bail out Sacramento for years of neglecting our roads," Republican leaders said in a joint statement.

Their opposition means that if even a few moderate Democrats defect, the package could fail. Brown urged support.

"This is like fixing the roof on your house," the governor said. "If you don't fix the house, your furniture will be ruined. The rug will be destroyed. The wood will rot."
 

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This one is a no brainer. That's what the gas tax was there to do....maintain the transportation infrastructure. Let the people who actually use the roads pay for the roads. So on average $10 a month, or $120 a year for gasoline or $100 per year for EVs. Unlike in Texas where the state has billions of road related debt and loans, and building most every new road as a toll road, that still don't pay for itself....and the concrete roads with so many holes and uneven surfaces in the cities and neighborhoods are like driving down a wagon trail. And you wonder why so many get SUVs for 'off-roading' down main street.

Also....with that fuel tax increase, I bet that increase in gas prices will also spike EV sales.
 

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A gas tax is paid by all but then, freight companies pass the gas tax on as higher prices.
So regular consumers end up getting hit from all directions as inflation rises.

An the main culprits that cause most of the wear and tear on the roads, get to pass on their
obligations to others.
 

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A gas tax is paid by all but then, freight companies pass the gas tax on as higher prices.
So regular consumers end up getting hit from all directions as inflation rises.

An the main culprits that cause most of the wear and tear on the roads, get to pass on their
obligations to others.
how this works in a free market with alternative options for Transportation is that the cargo get moved to a more fuel efficient modes like rail or Truckers invest in more fuel efficient Vehicles. In the end the keep in mind trucks already are between 130 ton-mile per gallon to 275 ton-mile/gallon, or the tax will add $.28 to transport one ton 275 miles, that isn't a lot. For example, if you buy an 2lb IPhone and you live in Sacramento, the tax would add roughly $.00056 to the cost of that I-phone, transporting it from the port of LA to Sacramento.

https://www.treehugger.com/cars/rail-versus-trucking-whos-the-greenest-freight-carrier.html

the real cost for trucking and the economy is having that truck Sit idle in traffic because of congestion or roadway failure.
 

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1990's: Trucks deliver large loads to a retail store, and then people would go there to buy items.
2010's: With on-line shopping, hordes of UPS and FedEx vans deliver door-to-door, creating more traffic, and blocking roads while the driver walks the package to the door. Half the time, people still go to the store to test the item, and then go home and buy on-line to save a dollar or two.
 
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