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Several States Begin Implementing Programs To Tax Drivers Per Mile

Image courtesy of Frédéric BISSON

UNITED STATES - Some states are currently exploring the possibility of replacing the existing gasoline tax with a pay-as-you-drive tax system, Turning Point USA reports. This proposed system would involve charging motorists taxes based on the number of miles they drive.

In recent years, there have reportedly been some challenges associated with the government's efforts to promote electric vehicles. As a response to a decrease in drivers paying gasoline taxes at the pump, certain states are reportedly considering the implementation of a "road usage" system. 

This system would involve taxing drivers based on the number of miles they travel. Turning Point USA believes that this approach may have negative consequences, such as penalizing commuters and potentially impacting an economy that is already facing challenges.


The Post Millennial reported that Boston-based CDM Smith suggested there might be a potential tax deficiency of $67 billion for transportation by 2050 if states do not find ways to increase revenue.

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The allocation of gasoline tax allegedly primarily goes towards road maintenance and highway safety within states. However, until recently, electric vehicle owners in each state have been able to avoid paying the gas tax. A recent law was implemented in Texas that established a $400 initial registration fee for electric vehicles, valid for a duration of two years. Additionally, there is a subsequent $200 annual fee for electric vehicles registered within the state.

According to Turning Point USA, the registration fee for gas-powered cars in Texas is typically between $50 and $54 per year for the average car owner. The prices for electric vehicles are intended to compensate for the revenue that would have been generated through gas taxes, which is typically used by the state to fund road maintenance.

However, Turning Point USA says that not all states are adopting an equally strategic approach to this issue. Oregon, Virginia, and Utah have implemented a road-usage tax.

In Utah, currently only electric vehicles are eligible for the program, and drivers are taxed at a rate of 1 cent per mile. The Mileage Choice Program in Virginia is an optional program available to all drivers who pay a highway use fee during vehicle registration. According to the website, drivers have the option to participate in the Mileage Choice Program instead of paying the highway use fee during registration renewal. This program allows drivers to pay fees based on the number of miles driven.

A pilot program was conducted in Washington state, which involved implementing a mock charge of 2.4 cents per mile. The purpose of this program was to assist decision makers in understanding the feasibility and potential impact of this concept in Washington.

At the national level, Turning Point USA believes there is a pilot program that is anticipated to begin soon. This program is reportedly funded by the federal infrastructure package of $125 million, which was signed by President Biden in 2021.

Some politicians and climate activists have allegedly set a target of achieving net zero carbon emissions by 2030. However, Turning Point USA expresses concerns about the limited timeframe given to the U.S. infrastructure to make the required adjustments. In the past year, a number of European countries reportedly found themselves in a challenging situation as their energy demands reportedly exceeded what their "clean" energy sources could meet. As a result, they had to rely on energy imports from countries such as Nigeria, Qatar, Norway, Algeria, and others to meet their needs.

The increasing interest in climate change has contributed to the growing popularity of electric vehicles. However, without sufficient funding for the necessary infrastructure, there is a concern that America may face challenges similar to California, such as rolling blackouts and energy production comparable to that of developing nations.

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