Electric Vehicles Will Have a Long-Term Impact on the Gas Tax

This week, the Trump administration is expected to release a plan to encourage more infrastructure-related projects. A new White House budget proposal allocates almost $200 billion of existing infrastructure spending to new projects over the next decade. The plan does not, however, address the current Highway Trust Fund’s shortfall, which in 2016 was projected to become insolvent by 2021. Recently, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce has proposed raising the gas tax by 25 cents per gallon, which has been one of the most straightforward ways to raise revenue for transportation funding. However, before the gas tax is considered a long-term policy solution it’s worth discussing the tax’s most significant existential threat: electric vehicles. The gas tax is a fairly well-designed tax that aims to achieve two main goals. The first is to capture the negative externalities caused by driving gas-burning motor vehicles. Internal combustion engines can be loud and dirty, and…

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