Serving Franklin County, WA

Inslee rejects Biden's call for gas tax holiday

OLYMPIA – It looks like there will be no state gas tax holiday for Washingtonians despite President Joe Biden’s endorsement of the idea.

On Wednesday, June 22, the president asked that Congress suspend the 18.4 cents per gallon federal gas tax for three months.

“Today I'm calling on Congress to suspend the federal gas tax for the next 90 days, through the busy summer season, busy travel season,” Biden said.

The president also called on states to take action on high gas prices.

“But we can also cut gas prices even more in another way,” Biden said. “That’s why the second action I’m taking is calling on states to either suspend the state gas tax as well or find other ways to deliver some relief.”

Gov. Jay Inslee was not moved by the president’s appeal.

“There’s no question many families are facing hardship from inflation and rising gas prices, but the governor has been consistent about his skepticism for this approach,” gubernatorial spokeswoman Jamie Smith told The Center Square.

She reiterated Inslee’s position that temporarily getting rid of Washington’s 49.4 cents per gallon gas tax – the third highest in the nation – would do little more than enrich fossil fuel companies.

“The oil companies would be the ones to benefit from suspending the gas tax because it provides another opportunity for them to pocket more profit,” Smith said.

Instead, she said motorists should wait for his effort to get a fuel tax credit implemented.

But such a credit would only benefit “lower income” residents.


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