By Ryan Roberts, UPLP Chairman
On the 1st of April this year, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer vetoed a proposed bill to suspend a 27 cent per gallon gas tax. This was voted largely along partisan lines in both the house and senate, and because of this the senate could not get a 2/3rds majority vote for the bill to have immediate effect. This means the suspension wouldn’t take place until 2023. Whitmer, along with other democrats make claims that the tax pays for necessary infrastructure such as roads and public-school funding. If we know anything at all about public infrastructure, much of those tax dollars are squandered through useless bureaucracy rather than going to the needed infrastructure. Whitmer, countered in hopes of a bipartisan agreement to suspend a 6% sales tax on gasoline. Instead of thinking about Michiganders being robbed by the state government for already inflated gas prices caused by government intervention in the markets. Democrats and Republicans have instead reduced themselves to Grandstanding and divisive rhetoric for political gain on both sides.
Michigan’s current gas tax is the sixth highest in the nation behind California, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Illinois, and New Jersey. With such tax cuts, Lansing would lose between 725-750 million dollars in revenue per year, according to a nonpartisan Senate Fiscal Agency. This may sound like a great deal of money, but congress could find other means to maintain infrastructure. Better yet, congress should stop funding it all together and allow private enterprise to find a way to pay for necessary infrastructure. This would put that money back in the pockets of hard-working Michiganders, and could allow them to make their own choices, with things such as their child’s education.
With fuel prices soaring at all time highs, our elected leaders could help by not just suspending the gas tax but eliminating it all together. This would effectively put more money into the pockets of Michiganders all over the state, allowing them to make purchases where they need to most, like putting food on the table with ever soaring food prices. Lansing really should stop with the useless politicking, and for once help their constituents in a great time of need. Eliminate the state gas tax.