On February 28th Senator Ted Gaines (R-El Dorado) applauded the California Board of Equalization’s (BOE) vote against a recommendation to increase California’s gas excise tax by $0.04 a gallon.

“This is a major victory for California taxpayers. With a budget surplus in the billions and the new gas tax that has already increased the price of gasoline by $0.12 a gallon, I see no reason why we need to tack on another $0.04 tax, with no guarantee that the money will go to fixing or maintaining our roads. We cannot continue to nickel and dime Californians to death.”

Every spring, the BOE meets to calculate a new gasoline excise tax based on a number of factors. Prior to their meeting, BOE staff recommended a $0.04 per gallon excise tax increase that would take effect this July. In an interesting turn in events, the BOE vote resulted in a 2-2 tie that prevented the increase from passing.

“We’re already paying the second-highest gas prices in the nation. It’s like there is a contest to see how expensive we can make staple goods and how unlivable we can make this state for the poor and middle class. We aren’t taxing champagne and caviar. Transportation is a basic need to live and work and raise a family. I applaud the members of the BOE for standing up for what’s right and giving taxpayers a break for once.”

Last spring, Governor Brown signed Senate Bill 1, the $5.2 billion annual transportation tax proposal and the largest gas tax increase in California’s history. Under the new bill, last fall, motorists began paying an additional $0.12 per gallon in gasoline excise tax.

Although the BOE was able to defeat this round of excise tax increases, Senate Bill 1 requires a 5.6 cent per gallon excise tax increase in July 2019. And beginning in 2021, the excise tax will be annually adjusted according to the Consumer Price Index.

Senator Ted Gaines represents the 1st Senate District, which includes all or parts of Alpine, El Dorado, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Shasta, Sierra and Siskiyou counties. Follow him on Facebook.

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