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Federal Fuel Tax

by TONI H / February 23, 2012 6:18 PM PST

>>> According to NACS, in the United States, as of the beginning of 2011, the federal excise tax on gasoline was 18.4 cents per gallon. Of course, states can add their own taxes to that; the January 2011 average was 48.1 cents per gallon for gasoline taxes. (Diesel carries a federal tax of 24.4 cents a gallon, and an average fuel tax of 53.1 cents per gallon, once state taxes are added in.)>>>


With people paying more but getting less per gallon, the Governments are making a lot of money when prices go up. With the deficit has high as it is, I have to wonder why part of this money isn't being used by the Federal Government to reduce that debt? The tax originially was supposed to be used toward infrastructure but hasn't been for a long time which is why BO supposedly wanted to use 'stimulous' money for that.

If they have so much 'extra' tax money floating around, it sure would be nice if they would stop being hypocrtical with the 'tax the rich' spiel. It just seems to me that the extra money is just more for them to spend instead of putting it to good use.

BO complains all the time about the 'big oil' companies, but it's disingenuous when you think about the tax being collected on ALL fuels, including what's being shipped out of this country AND taxing their profits AND taxing their corporate capital gains for equipment AND taxing their employees AND taxing their utilitiy bills to run their plants, etc, etc.

The Federal government has their cake and eats it too, and for the life of me I can't understand why they vilify them so badly so publicly when it's so obvious how much they need them.

If the Feds want to do away with their subsidies (which are piddly small compared to what they used to be), I'm fine with that as long as they stop subsidizing EVERYTHING....including green energy.

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All Answers

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Not that I know anything about it, but
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / February 23, 2012 6:58 PM PST
In reply to: Federal Fuel Tax

can you explain that logic?

If US taxes on gas are in cents per gallon and not as a %age, how does Federal and State tax revenues increase when gas prices go up?

Surely the amount of tax revenues is based on the number of gallons sold and not on what the oil companies price the oil as.

Where am I misinterpreting this?


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% vs per gallon price
by TONI H / February 23, 2012 8:10 PM PST

The higher the price of gas and other fuels, the more gallons it takes to fill the tank (cars, diesel for trucks, busses, trains, boats, etc., home heating fuel, etc), thus more revenue based on per gallon.

BO keeps saying that the US is producing more fuel, but he is neglecting to say that even more is being shipped overseas and not being kept here to keep our costs down for the citizens here. Exxon alone pays more than 40% in taxes...don't have numbers yet on the others. Chevron/Texaco is owned by Venezuela and I'm not sure how they are structured tax-wise. We just gave $6B to Brazil to drill there rather than allow the Keystone pipeline to be built here. We have closed over ten refineries (three in Pennsylvania alone three weeks ago).

Very little of this kind of news actually makes it to the main street media....even with the debate two nights ago, CNN never asked even one question about this rising gas price issue and the domino effect it has on consumers and the economy. In 2008, when gas prices reached $3.50 during Bush's term and we were at 5% unemployment, the MSM and the liberals were all over him every single day about what was he going to do about it and yet not a word regarding now that BO is in office, prices are at $5 a gallon in Los Angeles, CA, and unemployment is at 8.3%.

BO reversed Bush's opening of drilling on the east and west coasts and in Alaska, has shut down refineries, refused the pipeline, called a two year moritorium in the Gulf after the BP spill, closed/shut down coal mines/plants in three states, shut down natural gas drilling in Texas, etc., and yet went on tv yesterday and blamed speculators, Iran, and Republicans for the high gas prices. Last year it was blamed on the Arab Spring, earthquakes, tsunamis, and the Republicans.

And yet, the fuel tax keep rolling into the Treasury and has increased drastically with the rising fuel prices........

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by MarkFlax Forum moderator / February 23, 2012 8:14 PM PST
In reply to: % vs per gallon price

but that makes absolutely no sense.

"The higher the price of gas and other fuels, the more gallons it takes to fill the tank"

So, with a gas tank that has a capacity of 40 gallons, when the price increases, it can now take 50 gallons?

Higher prices does not mean more fuel is used.


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Fuel is on product that can trigger price increases
by Steven Haninger / February 23, 2012 8:31 PM PST
In reply to: Sorry,

when consumption goes in either direction. Higher demand allows for higher prices. Lower demand means less revenue for energy suppliers and they will raise prices to make up the revenue shortfalls. I'm expecting a natural gas price increase will be announced soon due to the mild winter. We've had this happen during other mild winter conditions. Even the use of higher efficiency appliances and gas sipping automobiles are not going to save us money as energy producers will adjust their prices to maintain their desired revenue stream. The same goes for recycling to save the planet. We don't save money this way either. At best, we can hope to stretch the supply of energy and other materials by conserving them. We pay when we're wasteful and we pay when we're thoughtful. Get used to it. Happy

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by TONI H / February 23, 2012 10:09 PM PST
In reply to: Sorry,

are getting less fuel for the cost and therefore filling up more frequently.

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So what?
by Josh K / February 23, 2012 10:18 PM PST
In reply to: Customers

It's still the same amount of gas usage unless they're driving more as prices increase, which seems unlikely.

How much did the federal gas tax get reduced during the last few Republican administrations?

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If they
by TONI H / February 24, 2012 12:53 AM PST
In reply to: So what?

would normally fill their tanks once a week to get to and fro from work plus taking the kids to school activities and grocery shopping, etc., they are now filling up twice a week to do the same thing. It's not the same amount of gas at all.

If a ship tanker hauls a load to China or another country that now has three times as many cars as they did five years ago, they now have to haul three times as many tankers to the same destination....more Federal taxes imposed.

If one load of heating fuel has to be repleneshed twice now in order to get the same amount used to heat a home, that's more Federal taxes.

And that list goes on for other vehicles........same results.....more Federal taxes.

If the Feds don't reduce the tax because it's not generally done, the excess tax collected on the fuel could be used to reduce our national debt.

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Seriously, Toni?
by Josh K / February 24, 2012 1:33 AM PST
In reply to: If they

If they're putting LESS GAS in the tank with each visit to the gas station because of the cost, then they are not "filling it twice."

Your premise is that if gas costs more, it takes more gas to fill the same tank. Your own words:

The higher the price of gas and other fuels, the more gallons it takes to fill the tank.

You're not seriously standing behind that, are you? The only things that cause increased gas usage are increased driving and decreased fuel economy.

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(NT) :)
by JP Bill / February 24, 2012 4:00 AM PST
In reply to: Seriously, Toni?
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You didn't get one of the new exandable gas tanks?
by James Denison / February 24, 2012 6:33 AM PST
In reply to: Seriously, Toni?

Actually the one on my W100 pickup is called a "reserve tank".

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I know, it's odd
by Josh K / February 24, 2012 7:21 AM PST

With every car I ever had, the gas tank capacity remained the same regardless of the price of fuel. Go figure.

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I think I have it figured out
by JP Bill / February 24, 2012 12:20 PM PST
In reply to: I know, it's odd

Instead of filling the tank with liquid we'll fill the tank with money/bills. A gas tank will hold so many "bills" Let's say it will hold 80.

lets say that last week it cost $80 to fill the tank...so you put 80 one dollar bills in the tank, and your tank is full.

This week the price of gas increased to 10 times last weeks price.(Exaggerated so I could use round numbers) So now it would cost $800. Instead of putting 80 one dollar bills in the tank...you put 80 ten dollar bills in the tank.

The actual volume of the tank hasn't changed...just the value of the contents in the tank.

And then we'll blame it on Obama....]:)

Suppose you were trying to sell 2 boxes...both the same size...1 box was full $1bills and the other was full of $10 bills...Which one cost more?

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Toni has apparently bailed out on this thread
by Josh K / February 28, 2012 10:45 PM PST
In reply to: Seriously, Toni?

Not that I blame her. Wink

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by TONI H / February 29, 2012 4:48 AM PST

just watching the liberal spin on higher fuel prices being an OK thing because it fits into the BO agenda with his administration cronies.....the higher they go, the more they can push the failed green policies, and it doesn't matter that the public has to fill their tank twice in order to go the same distances in a week anymore.

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Now you're backpedaling
by Josh K / February 29, 2012 5:15 AM PST
In reply to: Nope....

Your original statement was:

"The higher the price of gas and other fuels, the more gallons it takes to fill the tank"

A tank holds the same number of gallons no matter how much those gallons cost. And if someone is filling a tank twice in the time they used to fill it once, then they're using twice as much gas which means they're driving roughly twice as much. That is also irrespective of how much the gas costs.

There is absolutely no correlation between how much gas costs and how far a car can go on a full tank.


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Why would it take two fillups to go the same distance?
by Diana Forum moderator / February 29, 2012 7:19 AM PST
In reply to: Nope....

It might cost twice as much to fill it but it would still go the same distance.


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(NT) By 'fill the tank twice' I'm talking in $ not tank size
by TONI H / February 29, 2012 4:49 AM PST
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by MarkFlax Forum moderator / February 29, 2012 4:57 AM PST

since the same number of gallons is used to fill a tank, and since your article in your first post explained that Federal taxes are set at a fixed rate of 18.4 cents per gallon, it matters not how much a tank full of gas costs the user as far as ta revenue is concerned.

The Federal Government takes the same 18.4 per gallon cents from a full tank of gas no matter what the petrol prices are.

Perhaps your 'ire' should be addressed to the oil companies and not the federal Government.


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There would be a river of tears up here
by JP Bill / February 29, 2012 5:51 AM PST
In reply to: But
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Learn to use the price increase cycles
by Steven Haninger / February 24, 2012 2:49 AM PST
In reply to: Customers

Around here, it's been a ratcheting thing. Though it can happen at any time, most price increases are happening on Thursdays beginning in the mid to later morning. Somewhere during the weekend or first of the week, the prices creep downward. Then, on Thursday, they shoot upward. I'll notice a few stations raising their prices and will continue to one that has apparently not gotten the word. We've had two rather large hikes in the past 2 weeks with the total increase over this period being about 50 cents. Yesterday was Thursday and the price jumped from about $3.45 to $3.69. While I can't escape the inevitable increases, I've learned to top the tank on Wednesdays.

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I'm really sorry
by MarkFlax Forum moderator / February 24, 2012 3:58 AM PST
In reply to: Customers

but the logic escapes me. Of course as fuel costs go up customers have to pay more, but your top post is about customers paying more but getting less per gallonl and so tax revenues increase.

Simply put. If people buy more fuel then Yes, tax revenues increase. But suppliers increasing the cost of fuel at the pump does not increase tax revenues if that tax is in cents per gallon and not a %age of the cost per gallon.

Revenue will only increase if consumption of gas and fuel increases.

Tell me what I am missing in your argument.


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Taxes aren't hoarded
by Willy / February 23, 2012 10:04 PM PST
In reply to: Federal Fuel Tax

While the sums of taxes adds up the costs for infrastructure do too. It's not only repairs of the existing roads and such but also the building of new. These aren't cheap in any form and usually are budgeted when funds come in or get started with a head start. If you're in an urban area, you see that all the time, constant roads repairs, orange barrels every yr. on frequently used roads. At the same time, costs go up as time goes by and even if taxes kept pace they're easily outspent with any new project even with local/state funds added.

At the same time some of those funds are used to carry-over from past debt, so it's not just build and forget, they pay-off accrued debt and on bonds, etc.. God help us if a new bridge or major passage has to be carved out in order to make a road passable.

As for tax rates of rich and less rich, well I see it this way. Why, should I pay say 25% of my money for taxes and someone that maybe makes 100X more than me pay only 15%. Let's be honest, they're probably making 1000X more than me and even if they pay 25% in taxes, there is so much left over they can still live well. NO!, because living well for them is not having a decent house, but having several decent houses and all the trapping with it, yada, yada.... -----Willy Happy

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