Whitmer pledges to tackle gas prices

Whitmer pledges to tackle gas prices

The governor recently vetoed a pause on gas taxes

After celebrating the passage of a $4.8 billion infrastructure bill, Gov. Gretchen Whitmer says she is turning to gas prices. The “Building Michigan Together Plan” funds projects such as clean water, high-speed internet, state parks and her signature promise to “fix the damn roads.”

With Michiganders struggling under skyrocketing gas prices, Whitmer says she would like to pause Michigan’s 6% sales tax on gasoline. However, this comes as Whitmer promised to veto bipartisan legislation which would have provided a temporary hiatus on the state gas tax as Michigan families are facing huge price increases on fuel.

Senate Majority Leader Mike Shirkey (R-Clarklake) said the governor needs to work on this issue. “The governor isn’t just a day late and a dollar short on this issue, she’s weeks late and millions of dollars short. Other than writing a letter to Nancy Pelosi, she’s been absent as Michiganders are struggling with record-high gas prices. Now she’s proposing a half-measure that won’t save drivers as much as the bill we’ve already passed.”

“If the governor really wants to help Michiganders, she’ll tell Senate Democrats to support immediately suspending the gas tax. Then we can talk about doing away with the sales tax on gas once and for all.”

Whitmer, who had previously proposed tripling the state gas tax in 2019, says she supports a gas tax holiday at the federal level or on Michigan’s 6% sales tax instead of a gas tax cut. “I’m ready to work across the aisle with the legislature to negotiate a bipartisan solution that cuts taxes and lowers costs for drivers, seniors, and working families. We can start by pausing the sales tax on fuel,” Whitmer said in a statement Friday.

Michigan currently has the sixth-highest gas tax in the nation with a total of $0.64 per gallon ($0.27 of which are state taxes). The nonpartisan Senate Fiscal Agency told lawmakers this would save Michiganders approximately $770 million in taxes.

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