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Friday, November 22, 2013

Baker Opposes Bill to Increase Gasoline Tax

Baker Opposes Bill to Increase Gasoline Tax
11/21/2013
HARRISBURG – State Rep. Matt Baker (R-Bradford/Tioga) this week cast a series of votes in opposition to record high gasoline and diesel taxes.

“The vast majority of the good citizens of my district in Tioga and Bradford counties strongly oppose what is arguably viewed as the largest gas and diesel tax increase in Pennsylvania history,” said Baker. “The bill, as passed, will raise the gasoline tax on every driver, small business owner and consumer in the Commonwealth at record high levels and increases more than 108 other user fees such as registrations, licenses and permits.”

Baker noted that the gas tax could increase by as much as 28.5 cents and the diesel tax could increase by 39.8 cents per gallon over a five-year period. As currently levied, the Oil Company Franchise Tax (OCFT) is about 9 percent of the price of a gallon of gas, which calculated on a maximum price of $1.25 per gallon yields about 20.3 cents.“By gradually lifting that cap over time to reflect actual gas prices already more than double the cap means the amount of the tax paid by the consumer will more than double,” said Baker. 

“With the cap on the OCFT fully lifted, Pennsylvania will become home to the most highly taxed gasoline in the nation, with a total of 75.2 cents of taxes on each gallon of gasoline.”Baker noted that under a current state-by-state comparison compiled by the American Petroleum Institute (API), the highest-taxed gasoline is sold in the state of New York with a total of 75.2 cents of taxes on each gallon of gas. The national average, according to API, is about 49 cents. The Pennsylvania gasoline tax would be more than twice that of many states since the OCFT, according to API economist Rayola Dougher, and like other taxes, gets passed down to the consumer.The current state gas tax load is 32 cents per gallon, 15th highest in the nation currently, according to the Pennsylvania Highway Information Association. The increased taxes could now make the Commonwealth ranked No. 1 in both gas and diesel taxes in the nation. The Tax Foundation has Pennsylvania also ranked No. 15 out of 50 states for highest taxes.“Another 28.5 cents per gallon tax increase on gasoline and 39.8 cents per gallon tax on diesel represent an average of an 8 percent increase in major living and operating expenses,” said Baker. 

“The new taxes would cost motorists $5 more on an average tank of gas for a mid-sized car and $80 more on an average tank of diesel for a tractor trailer, but could be more as the price of gas increases over time.”Over the next five years, an additional $7.36 billion could be generated for the state’s transportation system, which would more than double PennDOT’s budget over its current $6.8 billion state budget allocation.

“This tax is viewed by most citizens in the Northern Tier as excessive, extreme and too costly for the average person in my district to afford, given the financial hardships it would create to taxpayers struggling to provide for their families,” said Baker. “Many citizens in rural areas travel between 50 to 100 miles round trip to work every day to provide for their families. Though most people would like to see their roads and bridges maintained and improved, the magnitude of these taxes and user fees are strongly viewed as unreasonable, especially for senior citizens living on fixed incomes and low- to middle-income citizens struggling to support their families.”

10 comments :

Anonymous said...

Another lawmaker who understands the people cannot afford to have more taken out of their income.
Those people will also have to pay more for the increase cost to business.

Anonymous said...

I totally agree with State Representative Baker... We cannot afford an increase...

Anonymous said...

This is unbelievable!! This is just the beginning as we all know when gas / diesel goes up so does just about everything else. What has happened to the 10's of millions of dollars that the state received for all the gas leases on the State land. Not to mention any royalty's that are currently being paid out. This just is not the right time for this increase.

Anonymous said...

The Republican leadership in both houses of the assembly and the governor need to go. They just don't get it!

Anonymous said...

The Republican leadership in both houses of the assembly and the governor need to go. They just don't get it!

Anonymous said...

How do the first two commenters here think we should save the bridges and highways that are falling apart and fast in this state?

Anonymous said...

The Republican leadership in both houses of the assembly and the governor need to go. They just don't get it!

Anonymous said...

11/22 @ 4:05pm

Keep the transportation money now recieved seperate from the general fund. Cut the BS and HUGE benefits from those incharge of the transportation money.

ANYONE with 1/2 a brain cell can tell you that as the economy tanks, electric cars on the road increases, and increased miles per gallon goes up, gas tax will go down.

Anonymous said...

I don't mind paying for roads and bridges but I do mind paying for the mass transit systems in Philly and Pittsburg which isn't going to benefit me in the least. let them pay for their own mass transit system. you'll see that's where most of the money is going to go

Anonymous said...

maybe they shouldn't make so much money. or maybe they should stop[ eatin on our tax money so much would help. more than any they should make 20,000 a year and then they would understand after they filled their own tank and bought their own supper dumb da dumb dumb dumb