This week, I submitted a Board letter along with Supervisor Anderson to the County Board of Supervisors asking for a one-year suspension of the State of California’s Gas Tax.
With soaring gas prices, increasing energy and utility costs, out-of-control housing costs, and the rising cost of goods due to inflation, many San Diegans struggle now more than ever to afford basic needs. Many seniors, living on fixed incomes are struggling with their monthly bills. Many families are struggling to put food on their tables.
On Friday, California set an all-time record with the average gas price over $5 (and climbing). To alleviate the financial burden of the rising gas prices in California, it is critical that a temporary suspension of the $0.51 per gallon state gas tax is enacted. With at least a $45 billion surplus (of taxpayer dollars) Supervisor Anderson and I are requesting the State of California help everyone by utilizing the budget surplus to ensure maintenance of California’s roads and infrastructure.
Traditionally, the gas tax is used to pay for road maintenance and repairs throughout the state. To compensate for the tax suspension and cover road maintenance and safety costs, the Governor and State legislature should backfill funds using the estimated $45 billion state budget surplus. For Fiscal Year 2021-22 the State’s gas tax is expected to raise $6.8 billion from gasoline purchase for vehicles using public roads, according to the State’s Legislative Analyst Office. Using only 15% of the projected State surplus can lower gas prices by 51 cents per gallon throughout California this year.
We cannot stand by and let San Diegans suffer while Sacramento politicians build up their coffers. I admit this is a short-term problem and longer solutions need to be looked into like America becoming more energy-independent, but that’s a Federal issue. In the meantime, San Diegans need help and it’s time for Sacramento bureaucrats to step up.