DALLAS (CBS 11 NEWS) – Lawmakers both in Washington and Austin are considering possible gas tax increases to pay for much needed road improvements.
Last week federal lawmakers unveiled a bipartisan plan to raise the federal gasoline tax by 12-cents. It would be the first federal gasoline tax increase in more than two decades.
Meanwhile state lawmakers now say between $4 and $5 billion a year is needed to simply maintain the state’s deteriorating road system.
Some drivers, like Tim Rogers of Dallas, say they would support a gasoline tax increase with one caveat – all of the tax dollars collected would have to go directly towards improving roads.
While filling-up at a gas station in east Dallas, Rogers said, “I’m willing to pay because if I can’t get on the roads cause they’re broke down, what good does it do me to buy cheap gas.”
For every gallon a gas purchased in Texas, 38-cents goes towards taxes (20-cents for federal taxes, 18-cents for state taxes).
Several state lawmakers say before they could even consider supporting an increase in the state’s gas tax, they say all the currently collected gas tax needs to go towards building and maintaining roads.
Some of the state’s gas tax money current goes to other transportation programs.
This November Texas votes will decide on Proposition One. The proposal would divert $1.3 billion in gas and oil taxes paid by drilling companies from the state’s Rainy Day Fund and put it towards road repairs and maintenance.
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