NATIONAL REPORT — The new year ushered in new gas taxes in eight states.
According to Convenience Distribution Association (CDA), motorists in the following states are now paying a little more to fuel up: Florida (1 cent for gasoline/diesel), Georgia (3 cents for gasoline, 5 cents for diesel), Indiana (2 cents for gasoline/diesel), Michigan (7.3 cents for gasoline, 11.3 cents for diesel), Nebraska (1.5 cents for gasoline/diesel), North Carolina (.3 cents for gasoline/diesel), New Jersey (15.9 cents for diesel), and Pennsylvania (7.9 cents for gasoline and 10.7cents for diesel).
Pennsylvania and Michigan ranked among the highest fuel taxed states before Jan. 1, CDA said.
However, New Jersey was previously the second lowest fuel taxed state. This latest increase, along with a 23-cent-per-gallon gasoline tax hike in November and another 12.5-cent diesel fuel tax increase slated for July 1, will make it one of the country's highest taxed states, the association added.
In addition to these scheduled increases, crude oil prices continue to recover as OPEC makes its first production cuts in nearly a decade and the U.S. export market adjusts to the high supply of recent years. These combined factors are sure to hit both consumers and businesses in these states and throughout the United States, CDA explained.
The gas tax increases could spread to other states this year. According to the association, Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Illinois, Indiana, New Mexico, South Carolina, Tennessee and Texas are currently considering additional gas taxes to fill in budget shortfalls or pay for new proposals.
"There is no doubt that gasoline taxes will continue to climb over the course of the coming year. These proposals will have positive and negative effects on the states that enact them and their border states," CDA explained. "While legislatures typically see raised revenue from these taxes, consumer behavior is often changed when something as visible as the price of gallon of fuel goes up. This impacts sales, distribution, travel and other consumer and commercial behaviors."
CDA, based in Reston, Va., is the trade organization working on behalf of convenience products distributors in the United States. Its distributor members represent more than $92 billion in U.S convenience product sales, serving a wide variety of small retail formats.