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Wilk not in favor of ‘pay-per-mile’ tax

Cory Alexander Haywood OW Staff Writer | 4/13/2018, midnight
State Sen. Scott Wilk (R-Antelope Valley) has announced the introduction of..

State Sen. Scott Wilk (R-Antelope Valley) has announced the introduction of Senate Resolution 103 (SR 103), urging the California State Legislature to abandon the pursuit of a ‘pay-per-mile’ tax on California motorists.

"Every work day over 200,000 commuters leave the Antelope and Victor valleys for work. Many of these super-commuters travel over a hundred miles a day. A pay-per-mile tax penalizes people who lack the resources to live in expensive urban centers and unfairly shifts the tax burden onto their shoulders," Wilk said. "With the spike in home prices, this situation is only going to get worse."

Between 2010 and 2015, the number of American super commuters, those who commute 90 minutes or more, has skyrocketed. California, with 635,024 super commuters, leads the nation in those traveling long distances to work.

The use of more fuel efficient, electric and hybrid vehicles has resulted in lower gas tax revenues for the state and transportation officials have been exploring ways to charge drivers based on miles driven.

Last year the California Legislature passed Senate Bill 1, a $52 billion dollar tax increase on Californians to fund construction and road projects. Among other things, SB 1 increased the gas tax rate by $0.12 per gallon, diesel fuel by $0.20 per gallon, raised vehicle registration fees and imposed an additional registration charge of $100 on certain zero-emission vehicles.

"Other states that have explored or enacted a pay-per-mile tax do not charge a fuel tax - certainly not one as high as California’s and it is doubtful the liberal majority in Sacramento would repeal the taxes and charges already imposed by Senate Bill 1 should a new system be adopted," Willk said. “Adding a tax per mile would drive businesses and Californians right out of the state.”