SAN DIEGO — This week marks 100 days since Governor Gavin Newsom first proposed a gas tax rebate.
California Republicans marked the milestone with a display of caution cones on the steps of the capitol and a demand. It’s the same request they’ve had for months. They want an immediate suspension of the gas tax, something the governor and the majority of Democratic lawmakers are not willing to compromise on.
"Families are being forced to make tough financial decisions as the state's coffers are overflowing with cash," Assemblywoman Suzette Valladares said. "The failure to act by the governor and the majority leadership is heartless."
Assembly Republicans are once again calling for lawmakers to suspend the 51 cents in taxes you pay at the pump.
“Gas is too damn high," Senator Brian Jones said. "I've seen gas prices that are higher than the federal minimum wage. California should know that there is a way for immediate relief at the pump, but their government is too greedy to stop taxing them.”
It’s a proposal they’ve tried bringing up for a vote several times on the floor. Each time it gets shut down.
"Why would we suspend a gas tax and allow these same corporate interest and companies to pocket these dollars by not passing them on to consumers when there's a better approach to pass it on to consumers more quickly?" said Newsom, in his May budget revise.
Democrats, however, can’t decide on what form of relief they’d like to make final.
On Tuesday, Newsom sat down with top legislatures to see if they could come to an agreement on how to send out either $200 or $400.
"$400? $200? That's nothing," Assembly Republican leader, James Gallagher said. "That's maybe a week's worth of gas for many people who are commuting or for people who have to drive a truck for a living. This is not relief."
Earlier this week, the legislative analyst's office said that an immediate suspension on the gas tax does not mean consumers would see immediate relief. James Gallagher said that could be true, but they first proposed the idea back in January so consumers would have saved hundreds by now.
July 1st the gas tax will go up again by a few cents. Newsom has supported halting that next increase, but that’s part of where the disagreement with the legislature stands.
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