Plan from Illinois state senators would double gas tax

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SPRINGFIELD, Ill. – Illinois lawmakers want to jack up the gasoline tax. Legislation has been introduced in Springfield that would double the tax and use the revenue for major road and bridge improvements across the state.

Lawmakers are trying to find ways to pay for badly needed infrastructure improvements.
State Senators Don DeWitte (R-33rd District) and Martin Sandoval (D-11th District) want to more than double the state’s gas tax, up to 44 cents a gallon. Their plan would also bump drivers license fees from $30 to $60. Also, vehicle registration fees would go up from $98 to $148.

They are hoping to bring in $2.4 billion a year to pay for updates to roads and bridges.

“These are problems across this state the residents are forced to endure on a regular basis and Illinoisans have gotten used to these conditions,” DeWitte said. “But these experiences should be the exception, not the accepted norm.”

Governor J.B. Pritzker said he favors updating the state’s infrastructure but hasn’t backed one specific way to pay for it.

“Eight-five percent of IDOT’s roadways require attention, 62 percent of our bridges are over 30 years old, 33 percent over a third are over 50 years old,” Sandoval said. “It is about time doing nothing is not a solution.”

The Illinois Petroleum Marketers Association and the Illinois Association of Convenience Stores oppose any increase to the gas tax.

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