Maryland House Moves Gas Tax Forward, Caps Yearly Increases | WAMU 88.5 - American University Radio

WAMU 88.5 : News

Filed Under:

Maryland House Moves Gas Tax Forward, Caps Yearly Increases

Play associated audio
House lawmakers gave their approval to the gas tax, after hearing several proposed amendments.
Matt Bush
House lawmakers gave their approval to the gas tax, after hearing several proposed amendments.

The Maryland House of Delegates has advanced a bill that raises taxes on gasoline to pay for new mass transit projects.

Delegates rejected eight amendments to the bill, while accepting three. One that got the thumbs up would cap any yearly per-gallon gas tax hike at 8 percent. The bill calls for that tax to rise annually with the rate of inflation, drawing the ire of Republicans like Kathy Szeliga of Baltimore and Harford Counties, who called this increase a first for the state.

"This would be the eternal tax that would go up every year," Szeliga says. "Because property taxes have gone down because assessments have gone down."

Democratic House leader Kumar Barve of Montgomery County responded that annual inflation jump mirrors the annual rise in construction and maintenance costs.

"The price will keep pace with the rate of inflation, just as the cost of asphalt does," Barve says. "Just as the cost of concrete would."

Gov. Martin O'Malley's initial proposal actually cut the per-gallon tax rate while aggressively phasing a sales tax on the wholesale price of gas. A House committee slowed that sales tax introduction, offsetting the drop in revenue with the per-gallon tax hike.

Supporters say new money is needed to build mass transit projects like the Purple Line and the Corridor Cities Transitway in the D.C. suburbs.

NPR

Speed Dating For Seniors Who Aren't Interested In Slowing Down

A new film follows daters ages 70 to 90 looking for love in five-minute intervals. "Speed dating for seniors" may sound funny, but The Age of Love is really about our lifelong need for intimacy.
NPR

Eat Your Veggies! Even The Ones From Fukushima

Foods from Fukushima, Japan, are back to pre-accident levels of radiation but people still aren't eating them. One way to ease concerns: a chemical that blocks radioactive cesium from entering plants.
WAMU 88.5

Fairfax County Supervisors Approve Pay Bump For Themselves

Members of the Fairfax County Board of Supervisors are about to start earning more money, as the current members have approved a measure that will raise salaries for the next board.
NPR

Apple To Replace AT&T In Dow Jones Industrial Average

The tech giant will replace the telecoms giant after the close of trading March 18. The change, effective March 19, was prompted by stock splits announced by Apple and Visa.

Leave a Comment

Help keep the conversation civil. Please refer to our Terms of Use and Code of Conduct before posting your comments.