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Local Lawmaker Proposes To Suspend Excise Gas Tax For A Year

Women is pictured pumping gas in San Diego on June 30, 2021.
Mike Damron
Women is pictured pumping gas in San Diego on June 30, 2021.

Starting Thursday, the state’s gas tax will once again go up by a few cents bringing the overall excise tax to 51.1 cents per gallon.

With gas prices hitting close to the $5 mark, Californians are feeling the brunt in their wallets.

Tom Williams of San Diego was at the gas pump, and said he’s done paying for overpriced fuel.

“I myself, I’m going to buy a hybrid car next week because of the rise in gas prices. I have to drive my car for work,” Williams said.

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The automatic increase is due to Senate Bill 1 passed by lawmakers in 2017, allowing for gas to go up in order to pay for road and bridge work.

“From what I’ve seen, I don't know how much maintenance of the roads they’re doing,” Williams said.

“The excise tax is placed on the fuel and then we pay at the pump the sales tax on top of that,” California Sen. Brian Jones, R-Santee, said.

There may be some hope for Californians.

Jones, along with Republican colleagues, is proposing to suspend the excise gas tax for a year.

“For the governor to use his executive powers, to waive the excise fee for the next year, and use some of the billion dollars surplus that the state is proposing in the budget this year and backfill that excise tax,” Jones said.

He says suspending the tax will help families recover from the hardships of the pandemic.

Local resident Don Becker agrees. He spends nearly $300 on diesel every week.

“The pandemic set me back, and I'm trying to catch up so we’ll see how it goes the next few months,” Becker said.

GASTAX