Sunday, April 30, 2006

texas dems propose gas tax holiday

With gas prices sitting around $3 in the Dallas area, North Texans are really feeling their pocketbooks empty directly into their gas tanks. Now, Texas Democrats in the Lege down in Austin are proposing a gas tax holiday, which would alleviate the state tax on gasoline for a ninety-day period. Combined with a similar measure circulating the U.S. Congress, Texans could see a decrease in gas prices of about thirty-eight cents for a period of at least two months.

As BOR reports, Governor Perry's team of spokespeople are calling the Democrats hypocritical for supporting this measure:
"With regards to this specific issue, I would have to question whether the Democrats are talking out of both ends of their mouths," Perry spokeswoman Kathy Walt said.

"Democrats say they want to better education, but this would take away from it. Twenty-five percent of gas tax is dedicated to education every year, and that could amount to hundreds of thousands of dollars."

In actuality, it's Ms. Walt that's "talking out of both sides of [her mouth]." Did she forget Comptroller Carole Keeton Strayhorn's surprise announcement of an $8.2 billion dollar surplus? If Perry's camp had taken the time to read HB 120 they would have noticed that the bill accounts for lost revenue.

The plan may have its flaws, but it's definitely better than anything the Republicans are coming up with. Unfortunately for the neo-cons, we can't drill our way out of this problem. The gas tax holiday is yet another instance of Democrats providing a clear alternative to the status quo of Republican-led government and attempting to help Texans at a level they can truly appreciate. No offense to supporters of the prayer plan, but something tells me that the Democrats' proposal is more likely to help consumers at the pump.

1 comment:

Steve Southwell said...

I think it's a nice try, but would play right into the hands of the oil companies, who would receive exactly the amount of the tax rollback in the form of windfall profits. It's simple economics.