Effort to lower fuel tax near Kansas' borders dies

| Tuesday, March 07, 2006

A bill in the Kansas House has died that sought to create a “border tax zone” where the state’s per-gallon fuel taxes would have been reduced to make prices more competitive with those in neighboring states.

The measure remained in the House Transportation Committee at the deadline to advance from the chamber to the Senate.

Sponsored by Rep. Gary Hayzlett, R-Lakin, the measure called for setting up a “competitive border tax zone” within 3,000 feet of a state line or for any city when its boundaries include a state line.

The bill – H2822 – would have reduced the state’s per gallon tax on gasoline and diesel to just 1 cent above the price charged in a neighboring state. The savings could have been as much as 6 cents for gasoline and 11 cents for diesel.

Kansas now charges 24 cents per gallon for gasoline and 26 cents for diesel. Reducing the price along the state’s borders would have more closely resembled the per gallon taxes of Colorado, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma.

In Colorado, the per-gallon tax on gasoline is 22 cents and 20.5 cents for diesel. Missouri’s per gallon taxes on gasoline and diesel are 17 cents while Nebraska charges 24.6 cents. In Oklahoma, the per-gallon tax on gasoline is 17 cents and 14 cents for diesel.

Kansas retailers told the panel prior to the deadline that the difference puts them at a disadvantage when their businesses are near the state line.

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