New York suspends gas tax for rest of year

June 1, 2022, 2:25 PM UTC

New York drivers might be about to get a break on gas prices.

Effective Wednesday, the state will suspend its gas tax for the rest of 2022. That could lower prices by 16 cents per gallon.

New York is currently averaging $4.93 per gallon, according to AAA. That’s a fair bit above the national average of $4.67. (Drivers in the New York City area are paying $5.03 for a gallon of regular unleaded.)

The move follows Connecticut’s decision to suspend its 25-cent-per-gallon gas tax earlier this year. New Jersey, so far, has not done away with its gas tax.

Some areas of the state could see even bigger discounts at the pump, as select counties that have their own gas taxes are capping how much they collect per fill-up at between $2 and $3 per gallon.

At a dollar level, gas prices are at an all-time high in the U.S., but they’re still far short of the inflation-adjusted prices of 2008. Fourteen years ago, the national average stood at $4.11, which is the equivalent of $5.52 per gallon today.

Despite calls for the federal government to suspend the national gas tax, legislators are hesitant to do so, saying there’s no guarantee those savings would be passed on to consumers and that funding for future road projects could be hurt. (New York officials concede they, too, have no power to insist that oil companies pass along the savings to drivers.)

Just over a year ago those same lawmakers were calling for an increase in the federal gas tax, which hasn’t been increased since 1993. Those calls were quelled, though, as prices began to rise again with Americans began driving more after isolating during the early days of the pandemic.  

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