It Is Premature to Increase Tennessee’s Gas Tax

There is an impending problem with road funding that’s compounded by the failure of the president and Congress to address the federal funding mechanism.

As innovation has driven more fuel efficiency, the dollars collected per mile driven in Tennessee fell while the costs of road construction increased. And it seems the revenue lines and the expenditure lines are about to cross in the negative.

Something has to be done. However it’s still too early for the panic button and way too early for a gas tax increase. With a $33.8 billion dollar budget, Tennesseans pay enough in taxes — remember, state revenue comes from taxes. As legislators, we must pursue alternatives and owe it to every taxpayer to exhaust all other options before even breathing the words “tax increase.”

Funds from the Tennessee Department of Transportation that came from your gas taxes were routed to the general fund, ranging from $30 million to $65 million annually from fiscal years 2001-02 through 2006-07 to cover state budget shortfalls resulting from TennCare overruns.

Read more…

Source: The Tennessean