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Report: Trump may explore a gas tax increase

By |  May 2, 2017
Photo credit: amira_a via Foter.com / CC BY

Photo credit: amira_a via Foter.com / CC BY

President Donald Trump indicated that he is open to increasing the federal gas tax to support U.S. infrastructure development, although he stopped short of endorsing such a course of action.

The federal gas tax has been fixed at 18.4 cents per gallon since 1993.

“It’s something that I would certainly consider,” Trump said during an interview with Bloomberg News.

Sean Spicer, White House press secretary, added some clarity to the president’s remark during a daily press briefing, pointing out that Trump did not express support for the gas tax and that he’s simply interested in exploring the possibility.

“What the president said during that interview was that folks from the industry come to him and expressed to him [how] deteriorating roads were affecting their ability to deliver goods and services throughout this country,” Spicer says. “And that they had expressed a willingness to see something like that (a gas tax increase) as a way to help pay for roads and bridges. He said, out of respect, he definitely would listen to them.

“He did not express support for it,” Spicer adds. “He expressed that a group that had met with him expressed support with it and he, out of respect, would consider their request. That’s it. There was no endorsement of it or support for it. He was just relaying what another industry group had shared with him about how to pay for roads and bridges that need to be repaired and the impact that deteriorating roads and bridges are having on their ability to operate and deliver goods and services.”

The Association of Equipment Manufacturers (AEM) was among the industry organizations to react positively to Trump’s comment.

“We applaud President Trump for putting this option on the table, and we encourage Congress to give the gas tax a fair look as it considers tax reform and infrastructure investment legislation this year,” says Dennis Slater, AEM president.

Kevin Yanik

About the Author:

Kevin Yanik is the editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry magazine. Yanik can be reached at 216-706-3724 or kyanik@northcoastmedia.net.

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