Gas tax to go into effect Wednesday

Published 6:22 pm Tuesday, June 30, 2015

Drivers may notice a slight increase in gas prices beginning Wednesday when Georgia’s new gas tax goes into effect.

The Georgia General Assembly approved the Transportation Funding Act of 2015 earlier this year. The act will replace the state’s four percent sales tax on gas with a flat tax of 26 cents per gallon.

According to AAA, the exact increase will depend on gas and diesel prices, but consumers can expect to see an increase between six and seven cents.

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The act aims to raise almost $1 billion in additional transportation funding to address the state infrastructure issues, according to the office of Gov. Nathan Deal.

“We faced obligations that could no longer be ignored, and current resources were simply not enough to preserve the infrastructure we need to get to work, to safely take children to school on buses and to keep the lifeblood of our economy pumping,” Deal said in a statement after House Bill 170 was passed.

The act caused a lot of conversation, especially when the original legislation proposed removing all sales tax on gasoline, including local option sales taxes.

The Bainbridge City Council, the Decatur County Board of Commissioners and the Decatur County Board of Education each adopted resolutions formally opposing early versions of the transportation bill that severely altered local sales taxes on fuel and would potentially take more than $600,000 in tax revenue from the BoE.

After a lot of back and forth, the Georgia Senate and Georgia House of Representatives agreed on a version that would leave local option sales taxes, including E-SPLOST, intact.