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Would You Pay a Fluctuating Gas Tax?

By queen
Monday, December 1st, 2008 at 11:58 am in Misc. Transportation.

Just when you thought it was safe to go back to the gas station, with East Bay average prices down to ONE DOLLAR AND NINETY-SEVEN CENTS A GALLON, an academic is suggesting a new gas tax.

But there’s method to his madness. Severin Borenstein, director of the University of California Energy Institute, suggests a transportation furel surcharge that would go up when gas prices are low and go down when they are high.

Borenstein’s paper suggests that such a tax would bring in money to help solve California’s budget crisis and help ward off what he and other experts fear: That as gas prices go down because people are driving less, people may start driving more again, hence driving prices back up. Got that?

I dunno. Prices aren’t expected to stay low very long, so the Queen would prefer to take full advantage while she can. You know?

(Photo by futureatlas on flickr.)

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5 Responses to “Would You Pay a Fluctuating Gas Tax?”

  1. david vartanoff Says:

    The state should tax vehicles based on CID/fuel economy with the tax GUARANTEED, no gubernatorial embezzlement, available to transit agencies based on ridership. As to gas tax the rate should be a per cent rather than a specific penny figure.

  2. Queen Says:

    Good points, David. Your comment reminds me that not everyone knows how California’s gas tax currently operates. Right now, the state imposes a motor vehicle fuel tax of 18 cents per gallon. If that seems high, consider that Kansas’ tax is 24 cents. Here’s a list: http://www.gaspricewatch.com/usgastaxes.asp

    Could you explain what you mean by “no gubernatorial embezzlement” (nice phrase)?

  3. david vartanoff Says:

    for at least two budget cycles, Ahnold has “stolen” the Spillover fund from transit agencies putting it into the general fund. Most shamefully, this year, after doing so he then scheduled a photo op tour handing out checks to the same agencies from bond funds he couldn’t move sideways. Look here
    http://www.ibabuzz.com/transportation/2008/05/20/transportation-vs-transit/

  4. david vartanoff Says:

    and here
    http://www.ibabuzz.com/transportation/2007/07/05/end-of-the-line-for-budget-fight/

  5. Queen Says:

    Excellent, thanks!

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