Republicans propose alternative to Gov. Walz's gas tax plan

They want to cut the tax, and make additional taxation optional.
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Republicans in the Minnesota Legislature have proposed a rebuttal to Gov. Tim Walz's plan to raise the gas tax: cutting the gas tax.

In a bill submitted by Sens. Andrew Mathews (Milaca), Jerry Relph (St. Cloud), Jason Rarick (Pine City) and Mark Koran (North Branch), the current tax on gasoline would reduce from 28.6 cents per gallon to 25 cents.

In order to generate the extra revenue for road and bridge funding that Gov. Walz wants to achieve, drivers would be given the option to pay an additional 20 cents per gallon when they came to pay for their fuel.

That extra tax would be paid quarterly by retailers to the state, with the money placed in the highway user tax distribution fund.

The proposal didn't enamor Gov. Walz, who said it wasn't a serious plan.

"Making sure Minnesota’s infrastructure is structurally sound isn’t optional," a spokesman for the govenor's office said. "Governor Walz has proposed a plan to keep Minnesotans safe from crumbling roads and bridges. It’s time for Minnesota Republicans to put forward a serious proposal to fund desperately needed repairs across the state."

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Gov. Walz revealed in his budget proposal last month that he wants to raise the gas tax in Minnesota by 20 cents per gallon, introduced in increments of 5 cents at a time over a span of two years.

The gas tax would then be linked to inflation from 2023 onwards, generating an extra $6.5 billion over a 10-year period to help plug the significant hole in 

l be phased in over 2020 and 2021. He also wants to index the gas tax to inflation by 2023. This would generate an extra $6.5 billion over a 10-year period.

Gov. Walz said he increase the working tax credit by $100 for single-filers and $200 for married filers to help lower- and middle-income families pay for this gas tax hike.

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