Is a ‘By-the-Mile’ Tax Coming for Louisiana Drivers?
Every day you see the hints of change. The price of gasoline is up another dime per gallon. A city bans the building of new gas stations. A major auto manufacturer announces a move to all electric-powered vehicles.
Like it or not, it seems that America's powers-that-be have decided the days of the internal combustion engine are numbered.
But what if America makes the move to a nation of plug-in vehicles? What if the gasoline powered vehicle - and gas itself - disappears?
Well, with the vanishing car the revenue from the per-gallon gas tax disappears, too. And that means that the federal government have to replace more than $30 billion dollars a year in tax revenue. And how might they do that? Well, the prevailing idea is a per-mile tax. And the common terminology is VMT, for Vehicle Miles Traveled tax.
An overview from taxfoundatiuon.org:
"Rather than using taxes on cars or motor fuel as a proxy for transportation, a tax levied directly on miles gets closer to capturing the externalities and approximating the road maintenance cost of each vehicle."
"That (gas tax) alternative is a levy based on the number of miles a vehicle travels rather than the amount of fuel that goes into the vehicle. The so-called Vehicle Miles Traveled, or VMT fee, is being tested in states such as Oregon and Utah. Washington state, meanwhile, issued a report in January highlighting the need to move away from the fuel tax toward such a system."
And the Biden administration has already introduced the idea via Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg. So says bgov.com:
"Buttigieg has repeatedly floated a solution: a vehicle miles traveled tax. Proposals for a VMT tax have been considered and rejected in years past. This time may be different, lawmakers and experts say. Increased investment in electric vehicles, Democratic control of Congress, bipartisan interest, and President Joe Biden’s opposition to increasing the gas tax could jump start a push to a user-based fee."
So what's the reality? With a new "woke" generation of government and industry embracing the liberals' Green New Deal and with Republicans being the minority party in both houses of Congress, who's to say that the reality of a VMT isn't on the way...and probably sooner than we might think.