Customers get tax-free gas

Posted by: Laurann Robinson

Some Lincoln residents got a bit of a surprise this morning at a gas station. 

This morning, 200 customers got to pay 45 cents per gallon less than the usual price. The reason, to show the public how much of their money is going straight to taxes while at the pump.

The group, Americans for Prosperity, held the Gas Tax Awareness event today at the U–Stop on 84th and Highway 6. 

Beth Friesen, was happy about the surprise says she’d definitely spread the word to her friends and family.

“I think it’s great to draw emphasis to just how much we do pay in this state,” said Friesen.

Matt Litt, the Nebraska Director of Americans for Prosperity says if the state legislature passes a bill further increasing the state’s gas tax, it could be costly.

“The state legislature is considering another gas tax hike of another 6 cents. So by the end of the decade, we will be paying over 50 cents a gallon of taxes on gas,” Litt said.

The money brought in by the state and federal gas taxes goes towards the upkeep of things like highways and bridges. 

Litt says it’s not that the group is against the maintenance, they just believe the money should come from what americans already pay.

He added, “we would say we need to prioritize our current spending for this core function of government, versus going back to the Nebraskan people and asking them for another tax increase.”

  Nebraska has not raised its state gas tax since 1993.

Senator Jim Smith of Omaha said when he introduced the tax hike, taxing the gas is the fairest way. Making those that use the roads pay for it… Whether they are a resident or just passing though.

“If we want to have real relief in our property  taxes and in income  taxes, which i do, then we’re going to have to have another way than the general funds to meet the needs that we have for our infrastructure,” said Sen. Smith.

That gas tax has to go through one more vote before it passes in the legislature, but Governor Ricketts has already spoke out against the bill… Meaning he may veto it if it gets to him.