Gas Tax Revenue
A push for higher fuel economy by the federal government prompts a gas tax revenue shortfall and—possibly--more pain at the pump for consumers.
The congressional budget office has released a report that says increased fuel efficiency in vehicles will remove 57 billion dollars in federal tax revenue used for highway construction. The Obama administration has proposed regulations that will increase car and light truck fuel economy cafe standards to 54.5 miles per gallon between 2017 and 2025. By raising fuel economy, consumers will buy less gas—meaning less “gas tax revenue” in the coffers. The 57 billion dollar reduction to the highway trust fund will impact routine road repairs and even mass transit.
One solution is to raise the 18.4 cents per gallon federal gas tax by 5 cents - the first increase in almost 20 years. Further, the technology required to meet the mandate will cost automakers and eventually consumers more than 157 billion dollars. The new fuel economy standards are expected to be finalized by late July.