Fact or Fiction: The new infrastructure bill includes a “Driving Tax”

WASHINGTON%2C+DC+-+NOVEMBER+15%3A+U.S.+President+Joe+Biden+signs+the+Infrastructure+Investment+and+Jobs+Act+as+he+is+surrounded+by+lawmakers+and+members+of+his+Cabinet+during+a+ceremony+on+the+South+Lawn+at+the+White+House+on+November+15%2C+2021+in+Washington%2C+DC.+The+%241.2+trillion+package+will+provide+funds+for+public+infrastructure+projects+including+improvements+to+the+countrys+transportation+networks%2C+increasing+rural+broadband+access%2C+and+projects+to+modernizing+water+and+energy+systems.+%28Photo+by+Kenny+Holston%2FGetty+Images%29

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WASHINGTON, DC – NOVEMBER 15: U.S. President Joe Biden signs the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act as he is surrounded by lawmakers and members of his Cabinet during a ceremony on the South Lawn at the White House on November 15, 2021 in Washington, DC. The $1.2 trillion package will provide funds for public infrastructure projects including improvements to the countrys transportation networks, increasing rural broadband access, and projects to modernizing water and energy systems. (Photo by Kenny Holston/Getty Images)

JILLIAN SYLVESTER

Media sources such as NewsMax have stated that the $1 trillion infrastructure bill includes a “Driving Tax” that will require a tax of 8 cents per mile driven. This is false

The mileage tax mentioned in the proposal is a mileage tax study to test how a tax like the 8 cents per mile would work. This does not mean that rate will be 8 cents, though. The study would be five years long, funded by $25 million annually, and use volunteers (commercial and passenger) to learn the effect of a federal mileage tax. It is called a National motor vehicle per-mile user fee pilot. 

A similar study was done in Pennsylvania this year. Pennsylvania has the third highest gas tax rate in the nation. The mileage based user fee (MBUF) is a proposed solution to the discrepancies between how much money taxes make and how much money it takes to keep the highways running. The MBUF would replace taxes on cars or motor fuels. The Pennsylvania study found the most efficient rate for a Pennsylvania MBUF would be 8.1 cents per mile which would raise $9 billion dollars compared to the $3.45 billion raised by fuel taxes (found here on page 50). 

Sources:

Boesen, Ulrik. “Pennsylvania Considers the Equivalent of a $2 per Gallon Gas Tax.” Tax Foundation, 23 Sept. 2021, https://taxfoundation.org/pennsylvania-considers-equivalent-2-per-gallon-gas-tax/.

Fichera, Angelo. “Mileage Tax Study, Not Actual Mileage Tax, Proposed in Infrastructure Bill.” AP NEWS, Associated Press, 29 Sept. 2021, https://apnews.com/article/fact-checking-907285011746.

Pennsylvania – Penndot.gov. https://www.penndot.gov/about-us/funding/Documents/TROC-Final-Report.pdf