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State motor-fuel tax rate per gallon on Dec. 31, 1945

[Compiled for calendar year from reports of State authorities] Alabama

6 New Hampshire_Arizona

New Jersey

3 Arkansas

New Mexico California

New York Colorado

4 North Carolina. Connecticut.

3 North DakotaDelaware

4 Ohio Florida. 7 Oklahoma

7.5 Georgia

6

Oregon Idaho

16 Pennsylvania Illinois 3 Rhode Island

3 Indiana

4 South Carolina. Iowa

South Dakota. Kansas..

Tennessee Kentucky 5 Texas

1 Louisiana

Utah

1 Maine 4 Vermont.

+ Maryland 4 Virginia

6 Massachusetts

3 Washington. Michigan

West Virginia Minnesota

Wisconsin Mississippi

6 WyomingMissouri. 2 District of Columbia.

3 Montana

5 Nebraska_

5
Total.

: 1.10 Nevada.-

4 i Rate changed from 5.1 cents to 5 cents Feb, 21 and to 6 cents Mar. 16. 2 Rate changed from 3 cents to 4 cents July 4.

* Special county taxes of 3 cents per gallon in Hancock County and 2 cents per gallon in Harrison and Jackson Counties, amounting to $304,000 in 1945, are imposed for spa-wall protection and are not included in this table.

* Includes the proceeds of the regular 3 cents per gallon motor-fuel tax and the 1 cent "liquid fuels tax" which applies to practically the same gallonage. Liquid-fuels tax collected on gallonage to which regular motor-fuel tax was not applicable ($7,000 in 1945) is not included.

5 Rate changed from 5.5 cents to 7.5 cents Apr. 16.

& Amounts given do not include $4,000 in Rhode Island and $613,000 in West Virginia collected and refunded for Diesel fuel used for nonbighway purposes.

7 Weighted average rate.

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Mr. WHITEHURST. I think, also, Mr. Chairman, you asked the other day about another gas-tax bill that had been introduced in Congress.

That bill was introduced by Congressman Springer.
Mr. Bares. Yes.

Mr. WHITEHURST. In the March 12 Congressional Record, in the appendix, there is a statement by Mr. Springer that I think would be of interest to the committee.

Mr. BATES. Was it a statement on local information?

Mr. WHITEHURST. We had nothing to do with it. Somebody brought it to me. Mr. Fowler handed it to me. He cut it out of the Congressional Record.

Mr. Bates. Thank you, Captain. (The excerpt is as follows:)

[From the Congressional Record, March 12, 1947]

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA GASOLINE TAX

(Extension of remarks of Hon. Raymond S. Springer, of Indiana, in the House

of Representatives, March 12, 1947) Mr. Speaker, early in this session of the Eightieth Congress, in fact on the first day of the session, I introduced H. R. 148 to raise the present gasoline tax

in the District of Columbia to 4 cents per gallon. This would adjust it nearer to the average of the several States, which average is 4.6 cents per gallon. The Federal Government also has a tax of 11%, cents per gallon, which would make the total gasoline tax in the District of Columbia 512 cents per gallon. The gasoline tax in the various States ranges from 4 cents per gallon to 7 cents per · gallon, plus the Federal tax of 112 cents per gallon, which makes the rate in the various States range from 51% to 81/2 cents per gallon. I mention these rates in this connection because some irresponsible businessman inferred that 512-cent gasoline tax in the District was far above anything in existence.

A few days ago H. R. 2283 was introduced by the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. Dirksen).' It proposes to accomplish the same result which I had in mind, except that this bill would make this 4-cent-per-gallon District tax permanent. I feel that this is the proper and necessary thing to do, and I am in full accord with making this tax permanent. A 4-cent gasoline tax for District purposes nas been approved by various citizen groups, the civilian advisory group appointed by the District Commissioners, and others, and is strongly and vigorously supported by the District Commissioners and Captain Whitehurst, of the Highway Department of the District.

This money which an additional 1 cent of gasoline tax will produce for the District of Columbia is urgently needed and has been earnestly requested by the Highway Department for a number of years. In fact, as early as 1941 Captain Whitehurst strongly recommended this additional tax. Highway improvement work is badly needed and much capital highway improvement is necessary. The city is growing and expending, new streets are being opened and improved, and the need is becoming increasingly critical.

Nevertheless, whenever Congress suggests fair and appropriate action on any subject vital to the District of Columbia, various reactionary and selfish agencies in this city begin a program of misrepresentation and vilification. Of course, by doing so they emphasize their unreliability and unfairness, but as a Member of Congress I am becoming disgusted with this kind of disservice to the District of Columbia and the confusion such misconduct creates. If these incompetent organizations will investigate the facts they will easily ascertain their own absurdity.

The most comprehensive study ever made of this District of Columbia gasoline tax subject was that made by a subcommittee of this House under the chairmanship of the gentleman from Texas [Mr. Poage). This report was the result of extensive hearings, consultations with highway officials of the States of Maryland and Virginia, and the compilation of information secured from the District Commissioners and the Highway Department of the District of Columbia. It was filed early in 1941. It has never been refuted or disproven by any of the agencies now attacking this proposed gasoline tax of 4 cents per gallon. Nor has it been disproven by anyone else who has made a careful study of this subject.

The city newspapers carried a news story purporting to quote representatives of the Federation of Business Men's Associations and the District Petroleum Industries ('ommittee, both organizations of persons in the District of Columbia, in which they denied the need for any more highway funds in the District of Columbia. Men of this class would be presumed to have more common sense than was exhibited in this instance. If the newspaper quoted them correctly, they demonstrated superlative ignorance of this subject and shocking unfairness in their approach to this subject. These statements were prompted either by ignorance or fraud. They were not based upon a true analysis of this subject, and these men should have known it or have kept still. Their statements do no credit to their intelligence. The trouble with these groups is that they have no desire to be fair or state the truth, and they represent or misrepresent a very small segment of Washington citizenry. I would be keenly disappointed if a very considerable segment of Washington citizens were guilty of this kind of misstatement. I would be convinced of their unfairness where they make such ridiculous statements, on the one hand, and, on the other, ask Congress to make a larger contribution to the District of Columbia budget.

Such attitudes as this, backed by such irresponsible statements, has caused the defeat of proper legislation on this subject of congressional responsibility to the District of Columbia in the past, and it will continue to bar such legislation in the future. Congress has a desire to be fair with the District of Columbia when citizens of the District assume an attitude of fairness and honesty with Congress. 99538-47

-44

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57.5

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State motor-fuel tax rate per gallon on Dec. 31, 1945

(Compiled for calendar year from reports of State authorities) Alabama

6 New Hampshire.. Arizona

5 New Jersey Arkansas

6.5 New Mexico. California

3 New York Colorado

4 North Carolina. Connecticut.

3 North Dakota. Delaware

4 Ohio Florida.

7 Oklahoma Georgia

6 Oregon Idaho

16 Pennsylvania Mlinois

3 Rhode Island Indiana

South Carolina Iowa

South Dakota. Kansas_

Tennessee Kentucky

5 Texas Louisiana

7

Utah Maine

4 Vermont Maryland

4 Virginia Massachusetts

Washington. Michigan

West Virginia Minnesota

Wisconsin Mississippi

WyomingMissouri.

2 District of Columbia. Montana.

5 Nebraska.

5
Total.

4. 10 Nevada--

4 1 Rate changed from 5.1 cents to 5 cents Feb. 21 and to 6 cents Mar. 16. * Rate changed from 3 cents to 4 cents July 4.

3 Special county taxes of 3 cents per gallon in Hancock County and 2 cents per gallon in Harrison and Jackson Counties, amounting to $304,000 in 1945, are imposed for sea-wall protection and are not included in this table.

* Includes the proceeds of the regular 3 cents per gallon motor-fuel tax and the 1 cent "liquid fuels tax" which applies to practically the same gallonage. Liquid-fuels tax collected on gallonage to which regular motor-fuel tax was not applicable ($7,000 in 1945) is not included.

* Rate changed from 5.5 cents to 7.5 cents Apr. 16.

8 Amounts given do not include $4,000 in Rhode Island and $613,000 in West Virginia collected and refunded for Diesel fuel used for nonhighway purposes.

? Weighted average rate.

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Mr. WHITEHURST. I think, also, Mr. Chairman, you asked the other day about another gas-tax bill that had been introduced in Congress.

That bill was introduced by Congressman Springer.
Mr. BATEs. Yes.

Mr. WHITEHURST. In the March 12 Congressional Record, in the appendix, there is a statement by Mr. Springer that I think would be of interest to the committee.

Mr. BATES. Was it a statement on local information?

Mr. WHITEHURST. We had nothing to do with it. Somebody brought it to me. Mr. Fowler handed it to me. He cut it out of the Congressional Record.

Mr. BATEs. Thank you, Captain. (The excerpt is as follows:)

(From the Congressional Record, March 12, 1947)

DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA GASOLINE TAX

(Extension of remarks of Hon. Raymond S. Springer, of Indiana, in the House

of Representatives, March 12, 1947) Mr. Speaker, early in this session of the Eightieth Congress, in fact on the first day of the session, I introduced H. R. 148 to raise the present gasoline tax

in the District of Columbia to 4 cents per gallon. This would adjust it nearer to the average of the several States, which average is 4.6 cents per gallon. The Federal Government also has a tax of 112 cents per gallon, which would make the total gasoline tax in the District of Columbia 512 cents per gallon. The gasoline tax in the various States ranges from 4 cents per gallon to 7 cents per gallon, plus the Federal tax of 112 cents per gallon, which makes the rate in the various States range from 51 to 812 cents per gallon. I mention these rates in this connection because some irresponsible businessman inferred that 512-cent gasoline tax in the District was far above anything in existence.

A few days ago H. R. 2283 was introduced by the gentleman from Illinois [Mr. Dirksen). It proposes to accomplish the same result which I had in mind, except that this bill would make this t-cent-per-gallon District tax permanent. I feel that this is the proper and necessary thing to do, and I am in full accord with making this tax permanent. A 4-cent gasoline tax for District purposes nas been approved by various citizen groups, the civilian advisory group appointed by the District Commissioners, and others, and is strongly and vigorously supported by the District Commissioners and Captain Whitehurst, of the Highway Department of the District.

This money which an additional 1 cent of gasoline tax will produce for the District of Columbia is urgently needed and has been earnestly requested by the Highway Department for a number of years. In fact, as early as 1911 Captain Whitehurst strongly recommended this additional tax. Highway improvement work badly needed and much capital highway improvement is necessary. The city is growing and expending, new streets are being opened and improved, and the need is becoming increasingly critical.

Nevertheless, whenever Congress suggests fair and appropriate action on any subject vital to the District of Columbia, various reactionary and selfish agencies in this city begin a program of misrepresentation and vilification. Of course, by doing so they emphasize their unreliability and unfairness, but as a Member of Congress I am becoming disgusted with this kind of disservice to the District of Columbia and the confusion such misconduct creates. If these incompetent organizations will investigate the facts they will easily ascertain their own absurdity.

The most comprehensive study ever made of this District of Columbia gasoline tax subject was that made by a subcommittee of this House under the chairmanship of the gentleman from Texas [Mr. Poage). This report was the result of extensive hearings, consultations with highway officials of the States of Maryland and Virginia, and the compilation of information secured from the District Commissioners and the Highway Department of the District of Columbia. It was filed early in 1941. It has never been refuted or disproven by any of the agencies now attacking this proposed gasoline tax of 4 cents per gallon. Nor has it been disproven by anyone else who has made a careful study of this subject.

The city newspapers carried a news story purporting to quote representatives of the Federation of Business Men's Associations and the District Petroleum Industries ('ommittee, both organizations of persons in the District of Columbia, in which they denied the need for any more highway funds in the District of Columbia. Men of this class would be presumed to have more common sense than was exhibited in this instance. If the newspaper quoted them correctly, they demonstrated superlative ignorance of this subject and shocking unfairness in their approach to this subject. These statements were prompted either by ignorance or fraud. They were not based upon a true analysis of this subject, and these men should have known it or have kept still. Their statements do no credit to their intelligence. The trouble with these groups is that they have no desire to be fair or state the truth, and they represent or misrepresent a very small segment of Washington citizenry. I would be keenly disappointed if a very considerable segment of Washington citizens were guilty of this kind of misstatement. I would be convinced of their unfairness where they make such ridiculous statements, on the one hand, and, on the other, ask Congress to make a larger contribution to the District of Columbia budget.

Surh attitudes as this, backed by such irresponsible statements, has caused the defeat of proper legislation on this subject of congressional responsibility to the District of Columbia in the past, and it will continue to bar such legislation in the future. Congress has a desire to be fair with the District of Columbia when citizens of the District assume an attitude of fairness and honesty with Congress.

99538-47- -44

For myself—and I believe that I have the same attitude on this subject as many Members of this House—I do not intend to so “supposedly equalize' 'this Washington tax problem as to make Washington a haven for tax dodgers. There is a constant and ever-present disposition on the part of groups of the kind I am discussing here to "mooch” on the Federal Government in the question of tax adjustment, which probably accounts in a large measure for the lack of action by Congress on the supposed question of tax-burden equalization.

There is broad room for argument as to whether Washington citizens are carrying a share of the tax burden comparable to that of citizens of the varions States. The tax burden should be so adjusted as between our constituents and the District citizen that each will carry his fair share of the tax burden of the Nation's Capital. However, the Washington taxpayer is not entitled to pay less than our constituents for the same service. When it comes to road inprovement taxes the problem is much simpler, as it is simply a numerical comparison of tax rate per gallon. If we are partners in Washington, then Washington citizens should do as much for their local tax problem as our constituents do for their tax problem. Washington has no right to levy only a 3-cent gasoline tax when it needs 4 cents, or even more than that, then “weep great tears of begging" for Congress to contribute more to District expense budgets, when their partners in my State pay for all their road and highway improvements with a much higher gasoline tax than the District. Consistency is as much a tax jewel as it is in any other life relationship.

If this group of disgruntled so-called businessmen do not want to bear their just share of the general tax burden and feel that they can relieve it by so doing. they should move out of Washington. When this bunch of self-righteous figure jugglers do so move out, they will find there is no place they can go where they will pay as low a gasoline tax as they do here. Their next stop will be in a 4-cent gasoline tax State, or from that on up to 7 cents. As for me, I am not going to be a party to a program of contribution to the District of Columbia budget that will result in District residents paying less taxes than my constituts pay. I do not believe that Congress will do that either. Taxes are a painful experience in any event, and should be evenly distributed where that is possible.

After reading these newspaper accounts of these supposed businessmen's groups, I am convinced that they desire and intend to “mooch" all they can from the Federal Government without regard to what is their fair share of the tax burden. That is a desire which manifests itself too frequently in this city, and as a Member of Congress I am becoming disgusted with it.

Congress desires to be íair to the residents of the District of Columbia, but it gets no help from such selfish groups as I am discussing now. So far as I am concerned, what they say will be entirely disregarded by me until they can analyze facts and get nearer to the truth.

Now let us see what are the facts: The Poage report discloses that the highway fund never has been sufficient to meet the street and highway needs of the city of Washington. In fact, this record shows that the highway fund “mooched" on the general funds and the Federal Government to the extent of $42,035,447 from the time this fund was established in 1924 to and including the fiscal year of 1941. The policy of spending more for street improvements than the highway fund produced was discontinued in 1938, and since that time needed work has been delayed until funds are available. This has resulted in much needed street repairs being delayed beyond the time when they are badly needed in many instances. A reference to this report will also disclose that althongh the population of Washington has practically doubled since 1924, that the highway department has little more funds available per annum now than 20 years ago.

In 1941 the District Director of Highways requested that the District gasoline tax be increased to 4 cents per gallon and a bill to that effect passed this House. In the meantime, war was declared, and the Senate cut the tax back to 3 cents, where it is now, on the excuse that wartime restrictions would curtail street repairs and capital improvements and the money would not be needed. This is now recognized to be a false economy, as the streets continued to deteriorate and capital improvements piled up on us with no accumulated backlog of highway funds in the District treasury to meet this accumulated need. This condition bas been called to the attention of the Congress and the public by District officials so often that it would seem that its truth should be self-evident.

There is another phase of this subject which further reflects the ignorance of these groups. The District of Columbia along with the several States is entitled to share in Federal highway funds to the extent it is able to match dollar for dol. lar the amount allocated under the terms of the Federal statute. No funds are

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