More calls to end petrol tax as pump prices set record in capital region – The Daily Gazette

ALBANY – As gasoline prices in the Capital Region hit an all-time high on Monday, there have been growing calls for the suspension of New York State gasoline taxes, which are among the highest in the country.

The already high cost of fuel skyrocketed with the Russian invasion of Ukraine and subsequent market disruptions.

Some gas stations were charging $4.399 a gallon on Monday, but the average in the Albany-Schenectady-Troy metro area was a bit lower, according to AAA. It reported self-serve regular unleaded gasoline averaged $4.24 a gallon on Monday, up 11% from $3.82 a week ago and 51% from $2.81 a year ago.

AAA said Monday’s average is the highest on record for the metro area.

At a press conference in Rochester Monday on a different topic, Governor Kathy Hochul said the tax cut does not guarantee lower prices at the pump and said she would like to see consumers benefit if the state was foregoing tax revenue, according to media reports.

But she did not rule out suspending the tax and said the matter was under review.

State Sense. Peter Oberacker, R-Schenevus, and Fred Akshar, R-Endwell, said Monday they were submitting legislation that would suspend the tax until Sept. 1.

Oberacker noted that residents of his rural district have to travel greater distances, which costs them more.

“Driving to work, to the grocery store, to the doctor or to pick up the kids from anywhere is a fact of life where we live,” he said in a statement. hurry.

“Families and small businesses are grappling with unprecedented cost increases in nearly every aspect of their lives, especially at the gas pump,” Akshar said.

The state levies an excise tax (8 cents), petroleum business tax (17.3 cents), flat rate sales tax (8 cents), and petroleum test fee (0.05 cents) on every gallon of gasoline sold, and there is also an 18.4 cents federal excise tax per gallon. Local sales tax is 4% in most counties, which equals 17 cents if gas is $4.25 a gallon).

These add up to 68.75 cents per gallon.

The local sales tax is the only one that has increased with the price of gasoline. Other taxes are levied as a fixed amount rather than a percentage.

Akshar and Oberacker are seeking to suspend the state gasoline tax until September 1, 2022. MK Angelo Santabarbara, D-Rotterdam, called for a one-year suspension in a proposal he announced this week last.

Santabarbara sits on the Assembly’s Energy Committee and is a member of the Assembly’s Democratic Majority. Akshar and Oberacker are members of the Senate Republican minority.

In her prepared remarks at Monday’s event in Rochester, Hochul acknowledged the impact of high gas prices on New York motorists and noted that she has already taken steps to accelerate fuel reductions. middle class taxes.

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