As gasoline prices approach $5 a gallon, some are calling for the repeal of Illinois’ gas tax. When Gov. J.B. Pritzker took office in January 2019, total state gas taxes totaled 31 cents. Now they are up to 63 cents and with 19 more cents tacked on from the federal government, Illinoisans are feeling the
As gasoline prices approach $5 a gallon, some are calling for the repeal of Illinois’ gas tax.
When Gov. J.B. Pritzker took office in January 2019, total state gas taxes totaled 31 cents. Now they are up to 63 cents and with 19 more cents tacked on from the federal government, Illinoisans are feeling the pain at the pump.
During a stop in Bloomington Wednesday, Pritzker said it is tough all over.
“It’s not an Illinois-specific problem,” said Pritzker. “This is literally every country in the world is experiencing this and every state in the United States.”
Illinoisans currently pay the 2nd highest taxes on gas in the country, a number that doubled after Pritzker took office due to the bipartisan Rebuild Illinois multi year capitol construction plan. That measure doubled the state’s gas tax and included annual gas tax increases, among other tax and fee increases.
Pritzker has proposed freezing the annual gas tax increase this year, but it would only be a temporary move.
State Rep. Blaine Wilhour, R-Beecher City, told The Center Square the state gasoline tax should be repealed entirely.
“That is one of the most regressive taxes that we have,” said Wilhour. “It disproportionately burdens working-class folks and disproportionately burdens rural folks.”
Several Democratic governors are calling on the federal government to suspend the federal gas tax but Pritzker has not indicated whether he is on board.
While in office, Pritzker has been an advocate of the green and environmental movements and their policies. On Wednesday, he was asked what can be done about surging gas prices.
“I guess if you can find any silver lining it might be that people will more likely choose when they go to buy a new car to go to electric,” said Pritzker.
Wilhour said energy legislation passed by Democrats makes for good press releases, but at the end of the day, it was always going to drive up energy costs.
“I think what we’re seeing right now is it’s a full on indictment of the fantasyland energy policies that we have been putting out from this place,” said Wilhour.
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