Proposals to cut prices at the pump are popping up throughout the
country as lawmakers try to appease fed up constituents who are paying more
than $3 per gallon of fuel in many areas.
a state senator has proposed suspending the collection of motor fuel taxes in
the state for the final three months of the year.
Meanwhile, voters in the state head to the polls Tuesday, Sept. 13, to
cast ballots on whether to boost the state’s fuel taxes to help fix roads and
If approved by voters, State Question 723, would raise
’s diesel and
gasoline taxes to 22 cents a gallon. Currently, the diesel tax is 14 cents per
gallon and the gasoline tax is 17 cents per gallon.
The tax increase would be phased in gradually over four years.
In hopes of easing skyrocketing fuel prices, Senate President Pro Tem
Mike Morgan wants Gov. Brad Henry to expand the current special session call to
address price spikes in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina.
Morgan, D-Stillwater, wants to dip into the state’s constitutional
Rainy Day fund to cover the $103 million in losses the Sooner State would take
if it were to temporarily eliminate the state’s taxes on gasoline and diesel.
Henry called Morgan’s plan “an intriguing idea.” The Democratic
governor’s administration is studying whether high fuel prices fit the
definition of an emergency required for lawmakers to access rainy day money, The Associated Press reported.
“If we can legally do that, it very well may be something that we will
proceed with,” Henry said.
Morgan told The Daily Ardmoreite using $103 million of the $461 million Rainy Day fund will ensure that road and
bridge money is not affected.
wouldn’t be doing truckers any real favors by not collecting the fuel tax.
Truckers would still be required to report and pay for their International Fuel
Tax Agreement – IFTA – miles in the state.
Simply put: If a fuel tax holiday is granted, truckers who buy fuel in
won’t be paying
for the tax on the front end, but they would have to pay for it later through
IFTA quarterly filings. And that goes for any state that doesn’t waive IFTA
“As more states are looking closely at the
possibility of fuel tax holidays, truckers need to be aware that the savings
they may realize at the pump could be short-lived,” said Todd Spencer,
executive vice president of OOIDA.
“Even though you don’t pay the tax on the
front end, if you’re running through states that have not waived it, you could
wind up owing a sizeable chunk on your quarterly reports.”
isn’t alone in its pursuit of combating
higher prices at the pump brought on by Hurricane Katrina.
Georgia Gov. Sonny Perdue has issued a
month-long moratorium on the state’s 7.5-cent-per-gallon tax on gasoline and
diesel fuel. Unlike proposals in other states, the order also includes a
suspension of the state’s 4 percent sales tax on fuel until the end of
September. The tax breaks will cost the state about $75 million in tax revenue.
Other states considering fuel cost relief
- Republicans in
are pushing a plan to give residents a fuel tax holiday for the
rest of the year. However, Democratic Gov. Jim Doyle wants to repeal the
state’s minimum markup requirement for diesel and gasoline.
Sept. 1, a new
law limits the wholesale price of gasoline, making it the first state in
the nation to limit prices. The cap does not apply to diesel.
lawmaker is considering legislation that
price cap – and include diesel fuel.
Gov. Ed Rendell said he may ask state lawmakers to temporarily lift the
state’s per-gallon fuel tax.
- Democrats in
the Missouri House want a two-week fuel tax holiday that would cut the
state’s 17-cent-a-gallon tax on diesel and gasoline to 7 cents a gallon.
– By Keith
Goble, state legislative editor
Land Line staff editor Jami Jones
contributed to this report.