McKevitt Joins Assembly Minority Colleagues In Renewing Call For Gas Tax Relief

Innovative plan will ensure cheaper, more reliable energy sources in the future
April 26, 2006

Assemblyman Tom McKevitt (R,C,I – East Meadow) today joined his Assembly minority colleagues to unveil their plan to provide relief from rising gas prices. The two-part plan will cap taxes on any amount exceeding $2 per gallon, and will develop the “Alternative Fuel Incentive Fund.”

“Simply put, gas prices have gotten out of hand,” said McKevitt. “Our plan will address the issue with plans for both short-term and long-term relief.”

While the capping of excess taxes will provide a much-needed short-term reprieve, the “Alternative Fuel Incentive Fund,” which is a dedicated fund for research, development, and use of alternative and renewable energy fuels, would work to ensure a cheaper, more reliable fuel source for the future.

McKevitt proposes to place the state sales tax revenue generated from the second dollar of gas ($1.00 to $2.00) into the Alternative Fuel Incentive Fund. This would generate an estimated $265 million annually to provide tax credits, grants, investments and other incentives to encourage ownership of hybrid and flex-fuel vehicles and the building of alternative fueling stations and refineries.

The minority’s original plan was voted down, with 77 majority members voting against tax relief. However, it is hoped that the majority will now understand the urgency of the issue, noted McKevitt.

Gas prices have already exceeded $3.00 per gallon, and if nothing is done, some analysts say we could see $4.00 or $5.00 in the not so distant future.

“I have said it before and I will say it again,” added McKevitt. “I will not let the commuters and families of my district be forced to cut items out of their budgets simply because relief has not been provided. This is an issue that has far-reaching ramifications for the future. Americans use 300 times more oil then China, the next largest consumer of oil, so if we can find a way to lessen our reliance on big oil, via alternative fuels, we can help drivers from being forced to pay exorbitant prices.”