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Joe Cunningham Proposes Temporary Suspension of State Gas Tax

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Former Congressman and current Democratic candidate for Governor Joe Cunningham called on the General Assembly today to temporarily suspend the gas tax until the end of the fiscal year to help South Carolinians with the recent spike in gas prices. The cost of gas in South Carolina has reached a 7-year high as pandemic-related issues have slowed production and distribution of oil around the world.

Some experts suggest this year’s increases in gas prices will cost each American household an additional $1,000.

“Gas prices are out of control and we have to get creative about how to lessen the burden on South Carolina families,” said Cunningham. “By suspending the gas tax and supplementing the lost revenue with American Rescue Plan funds or money from the state’s $1 billion budget surplus, we can help South Carolinians keep more money in their pocket without delaying or jeopardizing a single infrastructure project.”

Currently, the state gas tax is $0.26 per gallon. Gas tank capacities range from 10 gallons in smaller vehicles to larger pick-up trucks with over 30-gallon tanks. Suspending the gas tax would save a driver approximately $5 on each fill-up of a 20-gallon tank.

The General Assembly would be permitted to vote on a gas tax suspension under the current Sine Die resolution since the increase in gas prices is related to the COVID pandemic.

“The General Assembly could do this tomorrow,” said Cunningham. “I hope they will take this common-sense step to help South Carolina taxpayers.”

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