Kemp extends pause on state gas tax through August

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Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp (R) extended the state’s pause on its gas tax through mid-August as the nation continues to grapple with high inflation, seeing prices for gas and other goods soar over recent months.

The suspension of the state’s excise tax on motor fuel, which had been paused starting in March, was extended by Kemp on Friday, with the governor additionally halting the state sales tax on locomotive fuel. The suspension lasts until Aug. 13 at 11:59 p.m.

“To provide actual relief to Georgians, I am once again extending the supply chain state of emergency and suspending our state motor fuel tax. In addition to these actions, I am suspending the locomotive fuel tax to help fight rising costs that are being passed on to consumers,” Kemp said in a statement.

The Georgia governor claimed in his statement that President Biden and other Democratic leaders were not tackling the issue. Last month, however, Biden called for a 90-day suspension of the federal gas tax and for states to pause their own gas taxes or take other measures in response to surging prices at the pump.

But some lawmakers are concerned the move would strip funding for the Highway Trust Fund, which receives money from the gas taxes and goes toward infrastructure projects. Opponents have also expressed apprehension over how much those cuts would actually be passed along to consumers.

The development comes as the nation suffers the highest inflation in decades, driven by the COVID-19 pandemic and the Russian invasion in Ukraine. The United States last month recorded its highest-ever national average price of gas at $5.016 a gallon on June 14, according to AAA.

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