The president said Friday that we were not going do it now. What you ask is it? It is the idea of switching from a tax per gallon of gas to pay for road repair to a tax on miles driven. You put a G.P.S. device into every car and keep track of how far it’s driven and over what type of roads.
As we as a nation use less gas because of higher prices, more efficient cars, and new electric vehicles the government gets less and less in taxes for roads. It is apparently being considered on both the state and federal level as an alternative to the current system of a tax on gas consumption.
There are two big problems with a tax on distance driven. First of all it would take away any incentive to switch to smaller more efficient cars. Why not drive your old gas guzzler if it’s a matter of distance not gallons. More importantly it would be unfair to a large number of rural drivers who have no choice but to drive long distances on a regular bases.
If you grow up in the city you don’t realize that significant portions of the population have no public transportation and must drive long distances just to shop or work. I live in a rural area and a large number of the people I know routinely drive twenty miles or more round trip just to get to work each day. Wither it’s a tax on miles or gallons they get the short end of the stick. At least with a tax on gallons of gas used they have the chance to get a more efficient vehicle and cut back on the gas they use. With the distance system there is nothing they can do to lessen the burden this would place on them.
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