Fiscal reform committee report proposes gas tax hike

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Updated Mar 9, 2018

The bipartisan National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform, created by President Obama to address the nation’s fiscal challenges, has recommended a gradual increase in the gas tax to feed the Highway Trust Fund and pay for transportation spending. The commission – charged with identifying policies to improve the fiscal situation in the medium term and to achieve fiscal sustainability over the long run – proposes to raise the gas tax gradually by 15 cents beginning in 2013. Those funds would be dedicated toward fully funding the transportation trust funds and therefore eliminating the need for further general fund bailouts, according to the report.

The proposal is part of a proposed final report containing a full set of recommendations to achieve the commission’s mission. The final report, due by Dec. 1, requires the approval of at least 14 of the 18 members of the commission, which is chaired by Alan Simpson, former Republican senator from Wyoming, and Erskine Bowles, former chief of staff to President Clinton.

The commission was created in February and tasked with proposing recommendations designed to balance the budget, excluding interest payments on the debt, by 2015. In addition, the commission was to propose recommendations that meaningfully improve the long-run fiscal outlook, including changes to address the growth of entitlement spending and the gap between the projected revenues and expenditures of the federal government.

To view the co-chairs’ proposed report, click here.