Hold on to your wallets, Californians. A new gas tax hike is set to take effect on July 1.
Californians already pay the highest gas taxes in the nation. This hike adds another 0.6 cents to existing state tax for a total of 51.1 cents per gallon. That’s 21 cents higher than Californians paid just four years ago.
After a week of cringey appearances touting the COVID-19 vaccine and the relaxation of his draconian stay-at-home order, Governor Gavin Newsom is tellingly silent on the coming gas tax hike:
— The Late Late Show with James Corden (@latelateshow) June 16, 2021
Several California legislators have had enough of Newsom’s actions..
Senate Minority Leader Scott Wilk (R-CA21) told PJ Media, “The governor is investing in himself rather than California by parading around the state like a game-show host, passing out billions of taxpayer dollars.”
And Newsom is gleefully touring the state at a time when not only are California’s state gas taxes the nation’s highest, but the state’s average price per gallon is the highest as well:
— Scott Wilk (@ScottWilkCA) June 12, 2021
“Those very same taxpayers,” said Wilk, “could use some relief from our high cost of living, not a giant PR stunt by the state’s governor.”
How did Californians get to this #GasIsTooDamnHigh point?
In the spring of 2017, legislators in Sacramento passed the deceptively named Road Repair and Accountability Act, or SB1. The act was meant to address a lack of funding for the state’s transportation infrastructure. Instead, it became a giant slush fund for Democrats and their pet projects.
Much to Republicans’ dismay, Democratic lawmakers inserted language into SB1 that left them free to increase the gas tax each year without taxpayer approval. Oh, and the best part? There’s absolutely no guarantee the revenue will go to “roads and bridges.” In fact, after SB1 became law, Democrats allocated nearly 30% of the gas tax revenue to non-road projects.
In 2018, fed-up Republicans led an effort to repeal SB1, but Democrats ran an ethically questionable coordinated campaign to defeat Proposition 6. In the end, Californians narrowly voted down Prop 6, with a 55.1% majority voting to keep the gas tax in place. The Democrats and their cronies sealed our fate.
So here we are in 2021, and while an increase of 0.6 cents may not seem exorbitant, the newest hike comes after consecutive years of increases and a mere two weeks after the state’s emergence from its 453-day lockdown ordered by none other than Gov. Newsom.
“The high prices at the pump hurt the very people who need our help the most,“ added Wilk.
The lockdown and other state challenges have left California’s small businesses, workers, and economy reeling:
- California’s unemployment rate stands at 7.9%
- A record heat wave has threatened the power grid with rolling blackouts
- 35.9% (over 19,000) of California’s small businesses have closed since January 2020
- California currently has the largest homeless population of all 50 states
- Crime is at epidemic levels
- Drug cartels cross the open border going deep into the state
- 41 California counties are under a drought emergency
- Multiple wildfires are burning across the state
Common sense says a hike in the gas tax now, while the state is still reeling from the lockdown and other challenges, will only increase the cost of goods and services at a time when most Californians–especially our low-income residents–can least afford it.
Newsom could better help Californians by giving us a break from the gas tax, not free tickets to theme parks, lotteries for trips, and veritable bribes with our own taxpayer dollars.
Senator Andreas Borgeas (R-CA08) tweeted his disgust about the gas tax hike:
REGISTER your opposition to California's gas tax increase: https://t.co/bG3a592BvI
Despite CA's budget surplus of $75B, gas taxes are set to rise again in July. This increase is estimated to cost CA drivers $83M next year alone.
The gas tax should be put on hold immediately. pic.twitter.com/HXGxxTan3p
— Andreas Borgeas (@SenatorBorgeas) June 8, 2021
Don’t live in California and think this doesn’t apply to you? Never forget this is what Biden and the left have said they want to do for the rest of the country. California is the blueprint, but they can’t “Make America California” if Americans don’t let them.