California Gas Tax Rises 12 Cents a Gallon to Fund Statewide Road Repairs

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Cars travel on city streets and highway overpasses in San Diego. REUTERS/Mike Blake

California’s gas and diesel taxes will rise beginning Wednesday to pay for repairs to the state’s crumbling roads and bridges.

Senate Bill 1, signed into law by Gov. Jerry Brown April 28, increases the gasoline excise tax by 12 cents a gallon, the diesel fuel excise tax 20 cents per gallon, the sales tax on diesel to 5.75 percent, and raises the vehicle registration fee $25 – $175, depending on the value of the vehicle on Jan. 1.

The revenue from the tax and registration fee increases will be used to repair roads, highways and bridges and improve public transportation, Brown said.

Although the taxes are set to increase, they may not be here to stay if some Republican lawmakers opposed to them have their way, as they have initiated a pair of efforts to repeal the new taxes through a ballot measures in 2018.

“With Jerry Brown’s new gas tax, as of Nov. 1, 2017 every gallon of gas will cost 12 cents more, diesel will cost 20 cents more, and car registration fees will go up as much as $175 for every California driver,” said Assemblyman Travis Allen of Huntington Beach, who is also running for governor.

“Adding insult to injury, this massive new tax will not build any new roads, and it will do nothing to fix California’s worst in the nation traffic. In fact, Brown’s new gas tax legislation actually has specific language that will reduce lane capacity and increase traffic.”

Brown denounced the effort to repeal the taxes.

“I can’t believe the proponents of this ballot measure really want Californians to keep driving on lousy roads and dangerous bridges,” Brown said in September, according to the Los Angeles Times.

— City News Service

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