We've been asked which states adjust their gasoline taxA tax is a mandatory payment or charge collected by local, state, and national governments from individuals or businesses to cover the costs of general government services, goods, and activities. for inflationInflation is when the general price of goods and services increases across the economy, reducing the purchasing power of a currency and the value of certain assets. The same paycheck covers less goods, services, and bills. It is sometimes referred to as a “hidden tax,” as it leaves taxpayers less well-off due to higher costs and “bracket creep,” while increasing the government’s spending power. . Most states (and the federal government) define their gas taxA gas tax is commonly used to describe the variety of taxes levied on gasoline at both the federal and state levels, to provide funds for highway repair and maintenance, as well as for other government infrastructure projects. These taxes are levied in a few ways, including per-gallon excise taxes, excise taxes imposed on wholesalers, and general sales taxes that apply to the purchase of gasoline. in so many cents per gallon, which can make a difference as time passes and inflation erodes the purchasing power of that tax rate. For example, the federal motor fuels tax today generates one-third fewer dollars in real terms since 1993, when it was last increased. Inflation-adjusting your gasoline tax can prevent this, although it also means you're writing automatic tax increases into law.
- 3 states adjust their gasoline tax for inflation based on the Consumer Price Index: Florida, Maryland (effective 1/1/13), and New Hampshire (effective 7/1/14). Massachusetts will begin doing so on 1/1/15, assuming it is not repealed by voters in November. Maine formerly adjusted for CPI but repealed that effective 1/1/12.
- 4 additional states and DC adjust some portion of their gasoline tax for the wholesale price of gasoline: Kentucky, North Carolina, Virginia, West Virginia, and the District of Columbia.
- 1 additional state adjusts the gasoline tax for state transportation revenue needs: Nebraska.
Additionally, some states collect their sales taxA sales tax is levied on retail sales of goods and services and, ideally, should apply to all final consumption with few exemptions. Many governments exempt goods like groceries; base broadening, such as including groceries, could keep rates lower. A sales tax should exempt business-to-business transactions which, when taxed, cause tax pyramiding. in whole or in part on gasoline purchases: Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, and Michigan. California applies a partial "sales tax" on gasoline on the wholesale price. New York collects local sales taxes on gasoline.Share