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House offers changes to DeWine’s gas tax proposal

The proposed “gas tax” by Gov. Mike DeWine in the State transportation budget would raise the state’s tax of fuel from the current 28-cents-per-gallon to 46 cents and generate $1.2 billion as part of the two-year, $7.4 billion transportation budget.

The reason behind the proposed increase is significant shortfall in the state’s road and bridge maintenance budget — something the Ohio Department of Transportation (ODOT) looks to quickly approach $1 billion by 2030 if unabated.

Last week the Ohio House responded to the governor’s proposal with a 71 to 27 vote to raise the tax on gas 10.7 cents with a two-year phase in period, making the tax on gas $0.387 per gallon. In addition, the House:

  • Increased the tax for on-road diesel by 20 cents over a three-year phase in period, making the tax on on-road diesel $0.48 per gallon.
  • Added a provision putting compressed natural gas to the list of taxable motor fuels.
  • Added an electronic vehicle registration fee of $200 and a hybrid vehicle registration fee of $100.
  • Stipulated that 55% of revenue generated will be distributed to the state and 45% will be to local governments.
  • Combined, the revenue increases in the House will generate $872 million.

The transportation budget now heads to the Senate for consideration. It has to be signed by March 31.

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