You might want to fill your tank today. On Wednesday, Idaho’s gasoline tax goes up 7 cents a gallon.
Seven years after Gov. Butch Otter first asked the Legislature to shore up funding for Idaho’s deteriorating highways, lawmakers this year finally obliged. They gave Otter a third of a loaf, raising the fuel tax and vehicle-registration fees to generate an additional $94.5 million a year. State officials said the Idaho Transportation Department and local highway districts needed $262 million more per year to maintain 76,000 miles of roads and more than 4,000 aging bridges. Otter calls the revenue increase “a respectable start on a multiyear effort.”
The gas tax has been 25 cents since 1996. On July 1, the start of the state fiscal year, it rises to 32 cents, about 1-1/2 cents higher than the national average, according to the American Petroleum Institute. Annual registration fees for most cars will go up by $21, and $25 for commercial trucks. Electric vehicles will pay $140 a year and hybrids $75. A new tax will be charged on gaseous fuels such as liquefied natural gas.
The federal tax remains at 18.4 cents, unchanged since 1993.