Deadline approaching for California gas tax repeal ahead of November election

SAN DIEGO (KGTV) - The Republican-led effort to repeal California’s gas tax increase is facing a fast-approaching deadline.

Senate Bill 1 is better known as Gov. Jerry Brown’s Gas Tax bill. Since November 2017, Californians have had to pay an extra $0.12 for regular, $0.20 for diesel, and beginning January 2, 2018, more on car registration fees.

By the end of June, SB 1 proponents say the tax would generate $2.8 billion, which will be spent to repair deteriorating roads across the state, including large portions Interstate 5, Interstate 8, state Route 78, state Route 125, and Interstate 805.

Former San Diego City Councilman Carl DeMaio does not agree.

“This money is not going to fix our roads. It’s always been stolen by our politicians. It’s a fraud,” DeMaio said.

For months, his group, Reform California, has been collecting signatures to repeal SB 1. He said the tax is costing a family of four in San Diego an average of $780 extra every year.

DeMaio said the deadline to submit mail-in petitions to get the issue on the November ballot is fast approaching. The signed petition must be postmarked by Monday, April 23, 2018, and be sent to their campaign headquarters in Kearny Mesa.

“The time has literally run out,” he said.

He said they can also be submitted to their campaign headquarters in person by Wednesday. 

These are the deadlines for those who want to submit signatures with the DeMaio campaign. The official deadline recognized by the state is May 21, 2018. 

Earlier this month, Republican gubernatorial candidate Travis Allen was accused of using gas tax repeal funds meant for signature collectors to push his own campaign for governor.

“You have a lot of politicians that are for the gas and car tax repeal in name only. They really haven’t helped out. Travis Allen is one of those showboaters,” DeMaio said.

DeMaio announced his endorsement for Allen’s opponent, San Diego businessman John Cox.

Despite this hiccup within in the Republican Party, Demaio said the grassroots efforts by thousands of volunteers helped to get the necessary signatures.

“We need 585,000 quality signatures, and we’re going to submit a few more than that,” DeMaio said.

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