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Old 06-01-2012, 10:07 AM   #1
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Federal Gas Tax

Quote pulled from a CBS Sunday Morning story last week:

"Remember FDR's idea that the interstates should pay for themselves? Well, that never quite came to pass. We pay to build and maintain our highways mostly through the federal gas tax (currently 18.4 cents a gallon). That tax rate has stayed the same since 1993. Last year, about $32 billion in revenue came in; $37 billion in expenses went out.
You can guess who made up the balance: Every single taxpayer, regardless of how much, or how little, they drive."



Here's a link to the entire story, America's unrequited love of the open road - CBS News

This may sound crazy, BUT I think I'm in favor of raising the federal tax at least 5 cents a gallon (maybe 10 cents).

I'll be the first to admit, I'm not an expert but it seems like it could be a win, win, win situation.

Right now we talk about gas being "reasonable" at $4/gallon and fear $5/gallon . . . is 5 or 10 cents really going to make that much of a difference?

As far as my win, win, win comment . . .

Win #1, maybe some people will drive less (at least on unnecessary trips)

Win #2, money spent on improving roads would lower unemployment AND it could be an ongoing improvement plan not just a "surge".

Win #3, improved roads could cut down on congestion and maybe speed up your commute . . . spend less time in bumper-to-bumper traffic and you would use less gas to begin with???

Hey, maybe this could even pay for itself??

I'd even be willing to spend a small portion of the federal gas tax on improving public transportation . . . the more people you get off the road, the better!

Hmmmm?
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Old 06-01-2012, 10:37 AM   #2
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Boy is that going to open up a can of worms.
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Old 06-01-2012, 10:45 AM   #3
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The interstate highways were started by Eisenhower, long after FDR.

I would favor a raise in the highway tax if it was used for highways. Another 5 cents added to the $4.15 I'm paying now wouldn't make any difference to me.
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Old 06-01-2012, 10:48 AM   #4
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"Win #1, maybe some people will drive less (at least on unnecessary trips)"
If people drive less the prices will go up because profits will fall.
PGE (Portland General Electric) has for years promoted conservation and using less power. We did it. They raised the rates because dividends to shareholders dropped.
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Old 06-01-2012, 10:57 AM   #5
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Taxes and raising them is ALWAYS the answer to fix problems with Government problems. Ever see a politician who did not love more taxes?
Here is a Catch-22. Our current Government is PUSHING hard to go green with smaller vehicles with high MPG, electric vehicles with very high MPG and alternate fuel vehicles. So will taxes be effected with less gas being bought to move these vehicles? Ya...you bet ya! So there you go....got your wish for our politicians to justify higher taxes to move your vehicle down the road. Watch closely....this will be happening in your area soon.
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Old 06-01-2012, 11:34 AM   #6
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Another thing the government will do...add extra money to anthing and they will find more ways to spend it or "borrow" it to use for another pet project. My guess is some of the curent fuel tax is being used somewhere else. I know they use it for public transportation as a suppliment so they don't have to raise the fare. That means that those who do not buy gas or diesel are taking away from road repair. That being said, if they put laws in place as to where and how the money will be spent, and stop the currant raiding of the funds, I don't think I a nickle or so would kill me.
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Old 06-01-2012, 01:44 PM   #7
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the problem is voodoo economics always seem to divert the funds somewhere else
think about the fact that the oil companies only have 3-5 cent profit after they do all the work
how about a pump that has American drilled oil,refined in a US refinery and pumped from an American owned service facility
i would pay 10 cents a gallon extra and drive out of my way to buy it
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Old 06-01-2012, 02:04 PM   #8
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Making sure the tax is used as intended is the big issue. How much has been spent on those 'Sound barriers' lining the highways of urban and suburban America? They don't decrease sound to any large degree, they actually increase sound when you get hundred yards from the back of them, sort of a megaphone effect. One of the great 'make work' projects to the benefit of contractors around the country. I'm sure many of you can come up with other wasteful projects!
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Old 06-01-2012, 02:46 PM   #9
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Electric cars use the roads but buy no gas - no taxes collected. The more efficient cars become the less gas they will need so less taxes collected. People who live in cities don't drive but benefit from the trucks that do. Should they help pay for the roads? Roads still need repair and not just from use. Weather beats them up pretty well. The gov't will be forced to find an alternative method to fund road maintenance. There have been discussions already about charging by miles driven versus the current gas tax.

I'm not opposed to a few extra pennies if it goes to help pay for the maintenance. I do think the guy driving a Nissan Leaf needs to pony up a bit too though.
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Old 06-01-2012, 03:08 PM   #10
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I'm just a pore ole West Texas country boy and don't claim to be a tax expert, but it would seem to me that, just as the Federal government threatened to withhold Federal highway funds from the states that didn't incorporate seat belt laws, the 55 MPH speed limit, etc., the Federal government could also mandate that any state receiving Federal highway funds must dedicate all state fuel tax receipts solely to transportation (or even limit it to highways, if you don't like mass transit) construction and maintenance. Of course, there would have to be a corresponding mandate that Federal fuel taxes be channeled solely into the highway trust fund.

I dislike Federal mandates as much as anyone, but if something like this would actually force fuel taxes to be spent on the transporation infrastructure, then we'd have a better idea of what (if any) increase in fuel taxes at the Federal or state level might be necessary.

Just a thought.....

Rusty
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Old 06-01-2012, 03:31 PM   #11
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Even if the tax was raised 50 cents, the money wouldn't be used as intended. That's the real problem. An example is Social Security... totally robbed and depleted by welfare. And another, our teachers would make a lot more money if... 1.) there weren't so many overpaid administrators... and... 2.) if we let families feed their kids instead of this enabling policy of school breakfasts and lunches. If taxes were used as intended, we would all actually pay less... Like Rusty, I'm just a plain ol' West Texas boy, but I can actually do math...

Jack
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Old 06-01-2012, 05:10 PM   #12
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Another mis-quote from our media. The Interstate highway system was started by President Eisenhower June 29, 1956, and I believe FDR was not living at that time.
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken-55 View Post
Quote pulled from a CBS Sunday Morning story last week:

"Remember FDR's idea that the interstates should pay for themselves? Well, that never quite came to pass. We pay to build and maintain our highways mostly through the federal gas tax (currently 18.4 cents a gallon). That tax rate has stayed the same since 1993. Last year, about $32 billion in revenue came in; $37 billion in expenses went out.
You can guess who made up the balance: Every single taxpayer, regardless of how much, or how little, they drive."


Here's a link to the entire story, America's unrequited love of the open road - CBS News

This may sound crazy, BUT I think I'm in favor of raising the federal tax at least 5 cents a gallon (maybe 10 cents).

I'll be the first to admit, I'm not an expert but it seems like it could be a win, win, win situation.

Right now we talk about gas being "reasonable" at $4/gallon and fear $5/gallon . . . is 5 or 10 cents really going to make that much of a difference?

As far as my win, win, win comment . . .

Win #1, maybe some people will drive less (at least on unnecessary trips)

Win #2, money spent on improving roads would lower unemployment AND it could be an ongoing improvement plan not just a "surge".

Win #3, improved roads could cut down on congestion and maybe speed up your commute . . . spend less time in bumper-to-bumper traffic and you would use less gas to begin with???

Hey, maybe this could even pay for itself??

I'd even be willing to spend a small portion of the federal gas tax on improving public transportation . . . the more people you get off the road, the better!

Hmmmm?
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Old 06-01-2012, 05:32 PM   #13
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Courtesy of 10 seconds spent on Google:

"The origins of the Dwight D. Eisenhower National System of Interstate and Defense Highways, commonly known as the Interstate System, can be traced back to 1941 when President Franklin D. Roosevelt appointed a National Interregional Highway Committee to evaluate the need and potential for a national highway system."

(From a report by Hofstra University)
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Old 06-01-2012, 05:37 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Ken-55 View Post
Quote pulled from a CBS Sunday Morning story last week:

"Remember FDR's idea that the interstates should pay for themselves? Well, that never quite came to pass. We pay to build and maintain our highways mostly through the federal gas tax (currently 18.4 cents a gallon). That tax rate has stayed the same since 1993. Last year, about $32 billion in revenue came in; $37 billion in expenses went out.
You can guess who made up the balance: Every single taxpayer, regardless of how much, or how little, they drive."



Here's a link to the entire story, America's unrequited love of the open road - CBS News

This may sound crazy, BUT I think I'm in favor of raising the federal tax at least 5 cents a gallon (maybe 10 cents).

I'll be the first to admit, I'm not an expert but it seems like it could be a win, win, win situation.

Right now we talk about gas being "reasonable" at $4/gallon and fear $5/gallon . . . is 5 or 10 cents really going to make that much of a difference?

As far as my win, win, win comment . . .

Win #1, maybe some people will drive less (at least on unnecessary trips)

Win #2, money spent on improving roads would lower unemployment AND it could be an ongoing improvement plan not just a "surge".

Win #3, improved roads could cut down on congestion and maybe speed up your commute . . . spend less time in bumper-to-bumper traffic and you would use less gas to begin with???

Hey, maybe this could even pay for itself??

I'd even be willing to spend a small portion of the federal gas tax on improving public transportation . . . the more people you get off the road, the better!

Hmmmm?
First, FDR didnt do the Interstates or say that..

Second, it wasnt until 1993 that the Tax hit 18.3 cents..
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