Fuel Tax Changes Recommended To Help INDOT Funding Needs

Nov 24, 2014

Chamber of Commerce CEO Kevin Brinegar suggests a fee for owners of hybrids and electric cars, to make up for the loss in fuel taxes.
Credit Chrysler Group

The Indiana Department of Transportation is in the middle of a comprehensive two-year study to determine its future infrastructure funding needs. 

But Chamber of Commerce CEO Kevin Brinegar says there are some changes the legislature can make right away that will help move the state in the right direction.

He says that includes some sort of assessment on alternative-fuel vehicles, whose drivers don’t pay as much in fuel taxes as most people.

“Like North Carolina does – North Carolina imposes a $50 fee on hybrid vehicles and a $100 fee on electric vehicles for the privilege of using the roads and to pay their fair share for the damage done,” Brinegar said.

Brinegar says the state should also link gas tax increases to inflation.

Speaker Brian Bosma says he wishes the legislature had done that 15 years ago when his caucus proposed the idea.

“The gas tax is difficult,” Bosma said. “It’s a difficult animal to deal with because gas prices remain high, even though we had this little anti-spike here in the last week. So we have to find a solution on that.”

Bosma says lawmakers will also consider diverting more money from the sales tax on gasoline directly to road funding.