As much as it pains me to say this: America needs a $1 a gallon gas tax. And right now would be the perfect time to start. Vote, pass, sign. Please. This gas tax could rebuild America, create jobs, help the auto industry, improve the environment and do something no politician likes to do: Pay as you go.
Remember Jetgate? Back in the pre-bankruptcy days of late 2008, when the Big Three CEO's were traveling to Washington to plead their case for funds, Ford's Alan Mulally, General Motors' then-CEO Rick Wagoner, and Chrysler's former chief Bob Nardelli were publicly chastised for flying in corporate jets to the tune of $20,000 per round trip.
If the U.S. economy wasn't in shambles, renewing the federal excise tax on gasoline would be routine. But, as Congress intensely debated the national debt recently, the gas tax got moved to the back burner. This is a potential problem. With most of the 18.4-cent per gallon gasoline tax set to expire at the end of September, renewing it could spark political uproar and further divide Congress.
Americans drivers are abandoning their full-sized vehicles for compacts. Pure electric vehicles like the Nissan Leaf and plug-in, gas-powered cars like the Chevy Volt are becoming more readily available as 2012 approaches – and there are several new models getting ready to join them on dealer lots. Meanwhile, manufacturers in Europe and Asia are preparing to crank out a horde of microcars so small they make the ForTwo look like a Fleetwood. For a driver interested in going green, it sure s
Last year, BorgWarner and Robert Bosch LLC founded the U.S. Coalition for Advanced Diesel Cars. For the first anniversary party, the group is present in the EDTA advanced technology section of the Washington Auto Show to announce three new menbers – Tenneco, Dow Automotive and Umicore – and to explain that the latest diesel vehicles are clean, available today and need to stop being the ignored child in federal green vehicle policy.
When gas prices rose in 2008, one of the few bits of good news was that the federal government was bumping up the business mileage deduction to 55 cents per mile. Now that gas prices have stabilized in 2009, the Internal Revenue Service has reportedly decided to cut back on some of its generosity. According to Wallet Pop, the new per mile rate is 50 cents, a nine percent decline from a year ago. The decrease will likely do little to the casual business traveler, but high mileage sales types and
While not every state offers as big a rebate on the Tesla Roadster as Colorado does, there is a federal tax credit of $7,500 available to people who buy the electric sports car. Drivers aren't the only ones that various governments want to help in getting electric vehicles on the road. Tesla Motors itself will benefit from a favorable bit of tax massaging by state of California Treasurer Bill Lockyer.
Over the weekend, we heard that the new Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood (R), was considering implementing a tax on the number of miles people drive each year to raise the funds for road infrastructure. The idea was solidly rejected by our readers - and very quickly by the Obama Administration. One problem with a mileage tax, as Green Car Advisor points out, is that there is then no tax-based incentive to use less fuel. As the Washingto Post reports, the idea was pretty short-lived, with Whi
While biodiesel advocates go about setting up sustainability principles, the EU and the U.S. are in a growing dispute over the biofuel. The problem is that the Europeans see the $1-a-gallon tax credit that the U.S. provides for B99 (made up of 99 percent biodiesel and one percent petro-diesel) as an unfair subsidy that is harming the European biodiesel market. The EU's response: slap new (but temporary) tariffs on biodiesel imports from the U.S., maybe. The European Commission is looking into ap
Ask for a little help from the government, and the next thing you know you're asking for the government to protect you from the very help it's giving you. General Motors is restructuring its debt load by offering equity shares instead of cash to debt holders, namely the government and the UAW. The UAW transaction concerns the VEBA health care fund in that GM wants to pay its obligation to the fund with shares.
European car ads are always mentioning how many grams of CO2 a car emits because more than twelve European countries tax drivers based on those emissions. Germany, home to a cadre of automakers for which CO2 parsimony is not a prime consideration, has held out from the carbon dioxide taxation scheme, until now. The leading government coalition has finally agreed on a plan to tax CO2 output.
Oregon ran a pilot program in 2006 and 2007 that fitted 300 cars with GPS receivers, which kept track of the cars' mileage. The receivers also kept records of when the cars were on the road, noting whether they traveled during rush hour or not. When the drivers went to several specially-equipped gas stations, they paid a mileage tax based on how far they had driven and when they drove, rush hour being more expensive than the wee hours.
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