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12/3/2012 8:00:00 AM Write a Letter to the Editor Write a letter to the Editor

Letters: Fees Equal Taxes, Lowering Tire Costs

These Letters to the Editor appear in the Dec. 3 print edition of Transport Topics. Click here to subscribe today.

Fees Equal Taxes

A few weeks ago, I received a call from the staff of U.S. Rep. Renee Ellmers (R-N.C.). My family operates a business with more than 750 pieces of equipment constantly on the road in America. So I guess they felt it was worth the call to ask my opinion on the Interstate 95 toll situation. I am glad to see she is now trying to turn the tide with new legislation and stop this new tax — excuse me — toll (“Bill Would Prohibit Tolls on I-95 in North Carolina,”, 3-13).

I told Rep. Ellmers’ staff member that I first wanted to clear the air of the myth that trucking companies use the roads and don’t pay their fair share of fuel taxes. Truckers actually pay more fuel tax per mile than the public.

Anyone who has a vehicle larger than a pickup truck these days will tell you must first have an International Fuel Tax Agreement sticker on your vehicle to run the roads. At the end of each quarter, all vehicles with IFTA stickers must pay the fuel tax to run in each state, even if they didn’t buy a penny’s worth of fuel.

On the other hand, a member of the general public can leave here in Wilson, N.C., travel to the South of the Border fueling complex, purchase said fuel in South Carolina, come back and not pay a dime of fuel tax to North Carolina.

I wish my company had that luxury.

I also told Ellmers’ staff that I couldn’t understand why you would spend millions on an elaborate toll system to collect another tax when you already have a system in place to do so. You collect at the pump now. Seems that with a new toll system, you would have to maintain, bill, collect, etc., to keep the system going and you still have to keep up with the fuel tax system.

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