Md. Gas Tax Holiday Extension Amendment Fails To Pass
Drivers who fuel up in Maryland could face a 36-cent price hike, if the gas tax holiday is not extended past April 16th.
Republicans in the House Thursday pressed their Democratic colleagues to approve a 45-day extension of the gas tax holiday that took effect last month. An amendment to do so was presented on the House floor, but was rejected, 47 in favor, 82 against.
“Gas prices are still high and many of our citizens are still struggling to cover the cost,” Delegate Brenda Thiam, R-Washington Co. said. “There are many middle-class families whose family budgets will see no boost from the niche sales tax exemptions we’ve passed this session and will not realize the benefits of the retirement tax changes any time soon. They’re also the families that are paying higher prices for food, energy, and, like us all, higher prices at the pump. While there is not much we can do in Maryland to impact gas prices, we can help our citizens by continuing the gas tax holiday.”
Lifting the gas tax for 45 days would cost about $140-million, while the state has a multi-billion dollar surplus and Rainy Day Fund.
“We can absolutely afford this extension,” Delegate Jeff Ghrist, R-Upper Eastern Shore said. “We have extra dollars in the Rainy Day Fund and we have billions of dollars coming to us next year from the federal government. There is absolutely no reason to try to scare people into thinking their roads will not be paved if we extend the gas tax holiday for another 45 days. It is completely incorrect.”