Politics

California increases gas tax by three cents in spite of highest gas prices in the nation

Californians will be feeling more pressure at the pump this summer as the state’s gas tax increased by 3 cents this week, making the highest gas prices in the United States even higher.

The tax increase is part of 2017 legislation that scheduled a rise in gas taxes every three years to keep pace with inflation. Republican lawmakers have pleaded with Governor Gavin Newsom and California Democrats to suspend the gas tax increase, but Newsom and Democrat leaders in the state say the move does not guarantee big oil companies will pass the savings along to consumers. 

The 3 cent increase brought the California gas tax up from 51 cents a gallon to 54 cents a gallon. With gas prices averaging over $6 a gallon across the state, drivers are feeling the pinch.

One college student told ABC7 their wages cover gas and nothing else currently because fuel prices are so high. “I work for gas. Minimum wage job and I work for gas,” they said.

President Biden called on states across the nation last week to implement a 3-month gas tax holiday to help consumers fill their tanks for less, but California lawmakers have not announced any such plans. Instead, Governor Newsom has floated the idea of sending gas cards to California residents, which was rejected, and the state has decided instead to send up to $1,050 in relief payments to 23 million state residents.

The 5.6 percent increase in the gas tax only applies to non-diesel fuel, as the state’s gas tax on diesel is calculated differently. 

ARTICLE: LAURA SPIVAK

MANAGING EDITOR: CARSON CHOATE

PHOTO CREDITS: NEW YORK TIMES

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Laura is a freelance writer out of Maryland and a mom of three. Her background is in political science and international relations, and she has been doing political writing and editing for 17 years. Laura has also written parenting pieces for the Today Show and is currently working on writing a collection of remarkable true stories about normal people. She writes for FBA because unbiased news is vital to unity, and readers deserve the facts free of opinion.

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