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Letter: Gas tax relief needed

Published: Wednesday, Feb. 12, 2014 5:30 a.m. CDT
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To the Editor:

I recently introduced Senate Bill 2790 to give Illinois families and businesses nearly $450 million in Illinois sales tax relief on gasoline. Illinois is one of seven states with a sales tax on gasoline in addition to a per gallon tax. This is a tax on a tax and terrible fiscal policy. Even worse, the gasoline sales tax collected doesn’t even go to support roads, it goes to the state’s General Revenue Fund.

My plan calls for reducing the sales tax on gasoline. It saves Illinois families and businesses hundreds of dollars per year. After Gov. Pat Quinn and the Democrats raised income taxes 67 percent, Illinoisan’s deserve some relief.

 Part of the remaining sales tax will be dedicated toward a program to begin repairing our failing roads and bridges. The American Society of Engineers reported that 73 percent of Illinois’ major roads are in poor or mediocre condition (annually costing $292 per motorist in extra repair expenses) and found 2,311 of Illinois’ bridges to be structurally deficient.

Lowering this sales tax not only saves families money, it helps gasoline and convenience stores bordering other states with lower gas taxes. We lose millions of dollars to border states when Illinoisans cross the border to buy lower priced gasoline, then stay and purchase groceries and other items.

We need a top-to-bottom review of all taxes and fees that are currently levied. This proposal is my first step in that comprehensive reform of the way we raise and spend tax dollars.

State Sen. Kirk W. Dillard
, R-Hinsdale

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