California Senate approves gas tax bill

Posted at 7:36 PM, Apr 06, 2017
and last updated 2017-04-07 02:34:18-04

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (KGTV) - The California Senate has passed a transportation funding bill aimed at funding state road repairs and public transit projects by raising fuel taxes and vehicles fees.

The Senate passed the bill on a 27-11 vote, just passing the two-thirds majority threshold. The measure now moves on to the state Assembly, where it will also require a two-thirds vote. The Assembly reportedly plans to take the measure up immediately.

The amendment is part of a plan to generate $5 billion a year from gas and vehicle taxes for deteriorating roadways and transit projects.

Residents and some state leaders have said they oppose the tax, citing that Californians already face some of the highest taxes in the nation.

“Californians with low to moderate incomes are the big losers of this deal as it raises the gas tax by 70 percent and increases the average cost of registering a car by 25 percent," Senator Patricia Bates said in a release after the vote. "The big winners are high-speed rail whose funding remains untouched and bureaucrats who want more money without real accountability. It is appalling that 30 percent of the new taxes will not even be used for road repairs."

Supporters say the tax is necessary for repairing the state's aging roadways.