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  1. #1
    Atomic Punk
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    Default Senators propose 12-cent gas tax increase

    WASHINGTON (AP) — Two senators unveiled a bipartisan plan Wednesday to raise federal gasoline and diesel taxes for the first time in more than two decades, pitching the proposal as a solution to Congress' struggle to pay for highway and transit programs.

    The plan offered by Sens. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., and Bob Corker, R-Tenn., would raise the 18.4-cents-a-gallon federal gas tax and 24.4-cents-a- gallon diesel tax each by 12 cents over the next two years, and then index the taxes to keep pace with inflation. The increase would be applied in two increments of 6 cents each.

    The plan also calls for offsetting the tax increases with other taxes cuts. Senators said that could be done by permanently extending six of 50 federal tax breaks that expired this year, but they indicated they would be open to other suggestions for offsets.

    The plan was immediately embraced by industry and transportation advocacy groups seeking a long-term means to keep the federal Highway Trust Fund solvent. However, it would require a lot of heavy lifting from Congress in the politically-charged atmosphere of an election year to pass such a plan before late August, when the trust fund is forecast to go broke.

    Senate Finance Committee Chairman Ron Wyden, D-Ore., has indicated he's looking for means to shore up the fund for about the next six months while working on a long-term plan. That would move debate on a gas tax increase or some other revenue-raising scheme to after the mid-term election in November.

    Revenue from gas taxes and other transportation user fees that for decades hasn't kept pace with promised federal transportation aid promised to states. People are driving less per capita and cars are more fuel efficient, keeping revenues fairly flat. At the same time, the cost of construction has increased, and nation's infrastructure is aging, creating greater demand for new and rebuilt roads and bridges.

    The last time federal gas and diesel taxes were increased was in 1993 as part of plan to reduce the federal budget deficit. Republicans castigated Democrats for the tax increase, and it was a factor in the GOP takeover of the House and Senate the following year.

    Since then, lawmakers have been reluctant to raise fuel taxes despite calls from several blue-ribbon commissions to do so.

    "For too long, Congress has shied away from taking serious action to update our country's aging infrastructure," Murphy said in a statement. "We're currently facing a transportation crisis that will only get worse if we don't take bold action to fund the Highway Trust Fund."

    Sen. Tom Carper, D-Delaware, who attempted to increase the gas tax increase in 2010, said he was glad to see the idea "gaining more bipartisan support."

    Since 2008, Congress has repeatedly dipped into the general treasury for money to keep the trust fund solvent, sometimes waiting until the government was the verge of slowing down payments to states. States have complained that the uncertainty over whether federal aid will be forthcoming has limited their ability to commit to larger projects that take years to plan and construct.

    "Congress should be embarrassed that it has played chicken with the Highway Trust Fund and allowed it to become one of the largest budgeting failures in the federal government," Corker said.

    The six expired tax breaks identified by the senators as possible offsets for fuel tax increases are a research and development tax credit, certain expensing by small businesses, the state and local sales tax deduction, increasing employer-provided transit benefits to the same level as parking benefits, a deduction for spending by teachers on classroom supplies, and an increased deduction for land conservation and easement donations.
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  2. #2
    Atomic Punk jimmy812's Avatar
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    Come on, fuckers! Can't you curb some of your ridiculous spending?
    2-time Fantasy Baseball Champion.

  3. #3
    Sinner's Swing! Jesus H Christ's Avatar
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    Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out. --George Carlin
    "The less I needed, the better I felt." ~ Charles Bukowski.

  4. #4
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    The plan also calls for offsetting the tax increases with other taxes cuts. Senators said that could be done by permanently extending six of 50 federal tax breaks that expired this year, but they indicated they would be open to other suggestions for offsets.
    so just more confusing political bullshit that no one will be able to calculate 5 years from now.

  5. #5
    Atomic Punk Raldo's Avatar
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    12.13.17 @ 02:13 AM
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    How about putting their collective minds together to come up with a different solution.
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  6. #6
    Baluchitherium Ted Van Halen's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Raldo View Post
    How about putting their collective minds together to come up with a different solution.

    Putting their collective minds together would only result in the culmination of half a mind.


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  7. #7
    Outta Space Cowboy Scotty's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Jesus H Christ View Post
    Bipartisan usually means that a larger-than-usual deception is being carried out. --George Carlin
    Hahahahahahaha

  8. #8
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by It's Mike View Post
    so just more confusing political bullshit that no one will be able to calculate 5 years from now.
    I read that part of the article and this was my face

    1) They need to raise revenues so they are raising the tax. Okay, I disagree with the sentiment, but their logic is sound.

    2) To help it pass, they decide to cut taxes in other areas.


    So basically they are likely bringing in the same amount of money they were bringing in before, but it will be just be allocated to a different area.

    What. The. Fuck.
    CNN may think my opinion matters, but you shouldn't.

  9. #9
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by bsbll4 View Post
    I read that part of the article and this was my face

    1) They need to raise revenues so they are raising the tax. Okay, I disagree with the sentiment, but their logic is sound.

    2) To help it pass, they decide to cut taxes in other areas.


    So basically they are likely bringing in the same amount of money they were bringing in before, but it will be just be allocated to a different area.

    What. The. Fuck.
    it really is amazing.

  10. #10
    Baluchitherium
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    The proposed gas tax would affect everybody, whereas the tax cuts would benefit certain people. That would really suck for me personally.

    What the hell did they expect when the gov't wants better mpg from cars and trucks, but that is one of the reasons for increasing the gas tax??!!
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  11. #11
    Forum Frontman It's Mike's Avatar
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    Default

    Quote Originally Posted by Buschman View Post
    The proposed gas tax would affect everybody, whereas the tax cuts would benefit certain people. That would really suck for me personally.

    What the hell did they expect when the gov't wants better mpg from cars and trucks, but that is one of the reasons for increasing the gas tax??!!
    You don't really think they're gonna cut those "other" taxes, do you?

  12. #12
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Buschman View Post
    The proposed gas tax would affect everybody, whereas the tax cuts would benefit certain people. That would really suck for me personally.

    What the hell did they expect when the gov't wants better mpg from cars and trucks, but that is one of the reasons for increasing the gas tax??!!
    This is why I always chuckle when states look to raise the "sin" tax on cigarettes. That tax money goes to education in most states (well, that's where they claim it goes in the ol' ball in cup game), so when people actually quit smoking, suddenly they have to gouge everyone to make up the difference.

    This example of tax policy is exactly why we have to scrap our current system. Raising taxes to fund a specific area of government is pointless. It's a shell game where the revenues from one area are ciphered to another area. In reality, though, it's much worse than that, because rather than leave a gap in funding somewhere in the budget, they just borrow the difference putting us further in debt.

    This article headline should read:

    "Government Decides to Borrow More Money for Shit It Promised but Can't Fulfill."
    CNN may think my opinion matters, but you shouldn't.

  13. #13
    Atomic Punk lovemachine97(Version 2)'s Avatar
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    Default Senators propose 12-cent gas tax increase

    Part of a high gas tax was to work as an incentive to drive less. (Where I live in CA it's about $0.90 or so a gallon.) People did. Then the rules came down to make cars more efficient. So why is it a surprise that revenue is down?

    One way Los Angeles is combatting the fact that more people walk and bike to work now is by putting extra police on jaywalking duty. LAPD handed out 12,000 jaywalking tickets in 2013.

    One solution offered in CA was installing a GPS in each gas tank that communicates with the pump. The GPS would track where you drove and on which roads and could calculate the taxes owed and they could be distributed to the proper counties. This way, the funds go to the places where people drive, not fill up. Taxes could then fluctuate like a toll, offering a financial incentive, for example, not to drive the busiest roads at rush hour.

    The biggest thing this ought to show us is that these kind of taxes are bullshit. They say they're high as an incentive, but they come to rely on the income. They say it's for roads but it gets used elsewhere. When it's time to raise it, it's a shell game.

  14. #14
    Atomic Punk bsbll4's Avatar
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    Government monitored GPS in every car?

    What could possibly go wrong?
    CNN may think my opinion matters, but you shouldn't.

  15. #15
    carpe damn diem billy007's Avatar
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    maybe if they used the taxes they already collect from gasoline, tolls, registrations, licenses, parking, etc. for highway construction and maintenance, maybe they wouldn't need to collect more.

 

 

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