Written by William Hekman
Yesterday, a vote on a bill that would consider suspension of the gas excise tax for six months failed to pass the State Assembly. Assemblyman Kevin Kiley introduced the bill, but only 18 Assemblymembers voted in support of it with not a single Democrat voting with the Republicans. Local Democrat Assemblymembers Tasha Boerner Horvath, Chris Ward, and Akilah Weber voted against the bill. Republicans Randy Voepel and Marie Waldron voted for the bill. Democrat Brian Mainschein abstained from voting. San Diego has been hit hard by rising gas prices, and two local leaders are taking a stand.
Republican County Supervisors Jim Desmond and Joel Anderson have introduced a proposal that would call upon Governor Newsom to suspend the gas tax for a whole year and provide relief to families around San Diego. Supervisor Anderson said, “ People in my district are suffering from these outrageous gas prices. That’s why I was thankful for the opportunity to join Supervisor Jim Desmond in co-authoring this Board Letter”. While the Democrat board members have not signaled any support for Desmond and Anderson’s proposal, one board member’s wife made her opposition very clear over social media. Former Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez, who is married to Board Supervisor Nathan Fletcher, tweeted her opposition to the suspension, “what assurance do we have that suspending the gas tax would mean money back in our pockets? What controls are in place to keep the greedy oil corporations from just keeping gas at the same price & simply pocketing more? NONE!”
California currently has a 51 cent tax on gas and has the highest average price in the country at $5.750. The state is already expensive and with the budget surplus the state has, it should be no question that the gas tax should be suspended.
Photo Cred: AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes