Rhode Island – Tax On Miles Driven

There is nothing that your government does but need more money.  And Rhode Island is thinking up new and creative ways to destroy wealth – including one new idea to tax you for every single mile you drive.  Whether you drive inside Rhode Island or not apparently:

The major elements include:

•Both new and higher fuel taxes. The proposals include increasing the gasoline tax, now 30 cents, by up to 15 cents per gallon by 2016….They also include a new “petroleum products gross earning tax,” beginning with the equivalent of 10 cents per gallon of gasoline in 2010 and adding another 5 cents in 2014. That would affect all petroleum products, from gasoline and aviation fuel to those made from petroleum derivatives, such as plastics, paint and fertilizer.

•Car registration fees, now $60 for two years, would rise $40 per year immediately and could more than double, to $140, by 2013

A new mileage fee. The $150-million plan would not include it, but the $300-million plan would impose a half-cent-per-mile fee… At a half-cent per mile, driving 10,000 miles per year would cost $50 per vehicle. One cent would cost $100.

Also referred to as a VMT fee (for vehicle miles traveled), the mileage fee would be based on odometer readings reported by vehicle owners when they renew their registrations. The mileage could be verified during mandatory auto inspections

Tolls. The $150-million plan could include tolls, $3 per car and $6 per truck, only at the Connecticut border

Tolls on a new Sakonnet River Bridge. The plan relies heavily on shifting the estimated $210-million cost of a new Sakonnet River Bridge, now the DOT’s responsibility, to the Rhode Island Turnpike and Bridge Authority. It also assumes that the authority would borrow the money to pay for the bridge and charge tolls to pay the cost. Shawver said it isn’t clear how much the tolls would be, but guessed they would be in the $3-per-car range. That would take the cost of the new bridge off the DOT’s hands, while giving the authority the prickly job of imposing the tolls.

One other interesting fact.  Rhode Island already spends $354 million a year on its transportation systems.  So this postage stamp sized place is already spending $1 million a day and apparently getting broken bridges, bad roads, and lousy public transportation.

So based on that fact, why would giving more money to the obviously incompetent state transportation authority be a good idea?  Do you think they will spend the money wisely?  I would expect all the managers in the DOT to get a raise, lots of bonuses to be doled out to all the contractors, but if they do all this crap they will simply end up with the same crappy transportation system.  Only it will cost two or three times more than today.  And they will be back in a few years begging for more tax money.

And this doesn’t count the money that is obviously being spent by county government, city government and who knows what other overlapping and duplicate wasters of tax money are also spending on transportation.

But they are good liberals up there in New England.  And apparently they hate Conneticut since they only want to charge tolls on getting in and out of that state.

Good luck with getting any value for all those taxes you will be paying.

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