Rewarding Us With Tax Increases

Will higher-MPG vehicles starve highway funding?


It happens every time there’s a proposal on the table for increased fuel efficiency. Someone runs the math, points out that high mileage vehicles use less gasoline, then warns that less gas means less gas taxes for maintaining roads.

Reminds Murdoc of a story he pointed out a few years back:

Fulton to increase water rates 15 percent

Fulton County officials praised county water users Wednesday for their success at conservation — then socked them with a 15 percent rate increase for their effort…

Utility managers said water use has dropped by as much as 30 percent since last year when Gov. Sonny Perdue asked each county to cut usage by at least 10 percent because of the lingering drought. That has Fulton facing potential default on its bonds, said Angela Parker, public works director.

“We just can’t swallow this reduction in revenues,” Parker said.

A difference with the gas tax decreases due to increasing gas mileage would be that, via CAFE, the government would essentially be mandating conservation. And then probably using that conservation as an excuse to raise taxes.

Meanwhile, since I haven’t posted one for a while, here’s’s Gas Price Heat Map:

Gas Prices by County

Gas Prices by County


  1. Some alternatives are:
    toll roads
    tax on miles travelled on public roads
    vehicle special sales tax
    congestion charges
    Ride a bike or take the bus.

    Given electricity, one can make drinking water from watervapor. With a proper setup, one can recover and sell fertilizers from one’s own sewage.

  2. before you give into these demands make sure the money received from gas for cars and toll from toll roads does in fact go to repair the road.

  3. Other alternatves:

    * Open highway work bids to non-union shops.
    * Invest in Polymer or Rubber Modified Asphalts that last longer (and ignore union protests over lost work).
    * Reduce overhead (most of the 59,000 federal Dept. of Transportation emplyees are desk jockeys).

    Until then don’t talk to me about taxes (including tolls on roads I already paid for with taxes).

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