January 25, 2013 10:30 AM, EST
States Consider Boosting, Supplementing Gasoline Taxes to Pay for Infrastructure

States hit by falling revenue from fuel taxes are considering new sources of revenue, including raising gasoline taxes and creating taxes based on miles traveled, USA Today reported.

At least 13 states are considering proposals to find new revenue because stagnant federal and state gasoline taxes are not keeping up with needed maintenance of highways, bridges and other infrastructure, the paper said in a front-page story.

Sixteen states have not raised their gas taxes in at least 20 years, USA Today reported, citing the Institute on Taxation and Economic Policy, a think tank.

Much of the debate is coming because gas-tax revenues are declining as more people use mass transit and bicycles to commute and as cars become more fuel-efficient, thereby lowering the amount of gasoline taxes paid.

Oregon, Washington and Vermont are among the states considering replacing or supplementing gas taxes with taxes on vehicle-miles traveled, the newspaper said.

This month, several states, including Massachusetts and Virginia, have set a host of innovative funding proposals to make up for gas tax shortfalls.


Among the proposals are one by Virginia Gov. Bob McDonnell (R) to eliminate the state’s gasoline tax and replace it with a higher sales tax to pay for transportation projects.

Several states — including Virginia, Pennsylvania, Massachusetts and Michigan — are considering higher sales taxes or new taxes on filling stations, higher motor vehicle registration fees and adding more tolls, USA Today reported.