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Biden calls on Congress and states to initiate a three-month gas tax holiday

Maryland lead lawmakers say second gas tax holiday unlikely
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Posted at 7:11 AM, Jun 22, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-23 08:59:17-04

BALTIMORE — President Biden will officially ask Congress Wednesday to suspend the federal gas for three months. He's also asking states to follow suit with a state gas tax holiday as well.

Maryland’s gas tax goes up to 43 cents on July 1st so a double state and federal gas tax holiday could make it a little less painful to fill up at the pump.

President Biden blames high gas prices on Russia's invasion of Ukraine, calling it Putin's Price Hike. Critics say Biden's proposed gas tax holiday still doesn't address the problem.

Andrew Lipow with Lipow Oil Associates said “it does nothing as far as supplying the consumer with more energy which is what the world is looking for at the moment."

Call on Congress to suspend federal gas tax

Biden is calling on Congress and the states to put a hold on collecting gas tax until the end of September.

If a federal and state gas tax holiday were both in place, Maryland drivers filling up a 14-gallon tank at least once a week would save $8.54 a week or a little more than $34 a month.

While drivers filling up an 18-gallon tank at least once a week would save $10.98 a week or about $44 a month.

Gas is still nearly $2 dollars more expensive now than what it was a year ago.

Drivers are already paying $28 a week more or about $112 more a month to fill up a 14-gallon tank and $36 a week or close to $150 a month to fill up an 18-gallon tank.

The federal government collects more than $25 billion a year in taxes on gas and $10.5 billion on diesel. The current federal gas tax of 18 cents was set in 1993. Despite inflation, the federal gas tax hasn't gone up in nearly 30 years.

Money from gas taxes also helps pay for road repairs and mass-transit projects, but the White House insists that money could come from elsewhere including the massive infrastructure law passed last year.

“It's not going to have an impact on major road construction and major repairs,” Biden said.

Drivers will have to wait and see if the president's plan becomes a reality.

The White House needs approval from congress to make this happen which is considered unlikely. Even some Democrats dismiss the idea as "too little too late."

Meanwhile, the Maryland General Assembly has yet to call a special session to reinstate another state gas tax holiday.

MORE: Leading lawmakers pump brakes on calls for special legislative session over impending gas tax hike

Governor Larry Hogan made his latest push Wednesday.

Maryland's lead lawmakers, Senate President Bill Ferguson and Speaker Adrienne Jones, quickly responded in a statement indicating there would be no second gas tax holiday in the state.

The Maryland General Assembly already did exactly what President Biden is proposing at the federal level: implemented a temporary pause on the State gas tax while backfilling our Transportation Trust Fund to ensure maintenance of our roads and bridges. States cannot unilaterally bear the burden of increased gas prices driven in part by Putin's aggression in Ukraine and in part by the corporate greed of oil companies bringing in record profits. We hope to see Congress follow Maryland's lead and give all Americans a respite from increasing prices at the pump.