Proposed Gas Tax Hike for Road Repairs
By Katie Wiedemann, Reporter
DUBUQUE, Iowa - Paying for gas is expensive, but how about shelling another eight cents per gallon? That’s an idea state legislatures will debate in Des Moines during the upcoming legislative session.
On Wednesday both Republican and Democratic members of the Legislative Transportation Committee unveiled their bi-partisan plan to raise the gas tax.
Iowa currently collects a 22 cent tax on every gallon of gas sold in the state. The new proposal would raise the tax another eight cents per gallon. The first four cents starting at the beginning of 2013 and the next four cents at the beginning of 2014.
Some drivers say it might be worth the extra cents in order to get roads fixed.
Justin Herrig said, “The roads in Dubuque definitely need some help, so I don’t think it would be a bad thing. ”
Supervisors in Dubuque County admit some of the roads are in pretty bad shape, but they don’t have the money to make all the repairs.
Supervisor Daryl Klein said, “Dubuque County is approximately $3 million per year short of having enough dollars to adequately maintain the roads and bridges in Dubuque County. ”
The gas tax increase would produce about $23 million for road repairs, state-wide. That would be about a million dollars per year for Dubuque County.
Still some say there’s got to be a better way to cover the road repair costs.
Shannon Perkins said, “That’s what we pay for our taxes, our home taxes and our license plates. That’s what it’s for.”
If passed the eight cent increase would add up to about $60 extra at the pump per year for the average driver.
A few cents can really add up.
An additional increase legislators are proposing is raising the fee for new vehicle registration.
That money would also be used for state-wide road repairs.
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