A proposed Vermont fuel tax would increase the state’s diesel tax 4 cents over the next to years: 2 cents in 2013 and 2 cents in 2014.
Members of the Senate Transportation Committee say the increased diesel tax would ease the burden on gasoline users and shift some of the burden onto truckers.
The original revenue package that was approved by the house would increase fuel taxes nearly 7 cents in 2013 and nearly 8 cents in 2014. Sen. Dick Mazza, chairman of the Senate Transportation Committee, said that trucks should share the burden with commuters.
“It’s all users that have to be involved, whether it’s the trucking industry or automobiles,” Mazza told the Times Argus. “We need everybody to be part of the solution.”
Another proposal would change the current tax per gallon to a sales tax percentage system that would be based on the rate of inflation.
If passed, the sales tax-based system would be implemented in 2015 and would raise the tax an estimated 7 cents per gallon.
Roland Bellavance, owner of Bellavance Trucking in Barre, told the Times Argus that if either tax is implemented, he feels more of the funds should go to transportation.
Currently, more than $50 million of gas and fuel tax revenue is diverted from the transportation fund to help pay for public safety, education and other programs.
“They’re spending millions on things that have nothing to do with roads, and it doesn’t seem right,” Bellavance told the Times Argus. “If they’re going to raise this money, they ought to at least make sure it’s going to go to roads and bridges.”