By Bob Katzen
The House 32-124, rejected an amendment that would have suspended the state’s 24-cents-per-gallon gas tax for 60 days. The measure also requires the state to use money from its General Fund to cover transportation costs, normally funded by the gas tax, such as road and bridge maintenance, during the two-month holiday.
“The gasoline tax relief would help individuals with the rising costs of transportation, groceries, goods and services,” said sponsor Rep. Paul Frost (R-Auburn). “Democrats and Republicans came together in Connecticut to temporarily eliminate their state gasoline tax and there is no reason we can’t provide that immediate relief for the residents and businesses here in Massachusetts.”
Rep. William Straus (D-Mattapoisett) said the tax is currently paid by distributors, not directly by consumers at the pump. He noted that the amendment does not assure that the tax cut will be passed along to consumers.
“If Rep. Straus is claiming the savings won’t be passed down to the consumer than that can be addressed through the attorney general or Rep. Straus could’ve offered a further amendment to address the issue when it was on the floor instead of making it an excuse not to vote for it,” responded Frost. “Rep. Straus wasn’t interested in making it work for Massachusetts residents or businesses but rather chose to grandstand against much needed tax and cost relief.”
(A “Yes” vote is for the suspension of the gas tax. A “No” vote is against the suspension).
Rep. Christine Barber No Rep. Mike Connolly No Rep. Erika Uyterhoeven No