“This overnight price explosion is killing California families and businesses and we cannot afford one more day,” said Senator Gaines. “The California Air Resources Board needs to immediately suspend the expensive special ‘summer blend’ requirement so we can import more gas now. We need to defer the gasoline excise tax. Not in a week or a month but this very minute.”
Supply disruptions are ostensibly behind the price jump, which saw prices shoot up between $0.20-0.50 per gallon statewide in less than a week. It is unclear when normal supplies will again be available and analysts expect prices to spike even further. Regardless, Senator Gaines saw the price spikes as part of a larger problem in California.
“California is wildly overtaxed and overregulated and it makes everything in our state artificially expensive, even when things are working right. When something goes wrong, it shoots prices into the stratosphere,” he said. “That is not fair to families. We are regulating and taxing them into poverty.”
Senator Gaines is currently carrying Senate Bill 1, which would suspend for the next decade the hidden gas tax that resulted from the expansion of California’s cap-and-trade program to include gasoline and diesel fuels. This program requires fuel producers to purchase emission allowances for every gallon of fuel sold in California.
The tax went into effect on January 1, 2015 and has contributed to the increase in fuel costs. Senate Bill 1 would suspend that increase for the next decade, saving individuals and businesses money and giving technology an opportunity to catch up.
Senator Ted Gaines represents the 1st Senate District, which includes all or parts of Alpine, El Dorado, Lassen, Modoc, Nevada, Placer, Plumas, Sacramento, Shasta, Sierra and Siskiyou counties.
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