NH GOP - Lynch's Failure of Leadership Continues: Let's Raise the Gas Tax

Concord, NH – Just days after experts predicted that gasoline will see “huge price increases in some places and a peak average price of $4.05 a gallon” by this spring, Governor John Lynch proved just how out of touch he is by announcing a plan to increase the gas tax.  Families across New Hampshire are struggling in a tough economic recovery, yet Gov. Lynch and New Hampshire Democrats want to force an additional burden onto their already cash-strapped budgets.

“New Hampshire families are already looking for ways to do more with less, so an additional tax increase will only make matters worse and dampen any economic recovery we might see,” said New Hampshire Republican State Committee Chairman Wayne MacDonald.  “What’s worse is that a gas tax increase tends to hit low- and middle-class families the hardest because costs to heat their homes and drive to work already take up a larger share of their budget.”

“Department of Transportation officials said Tuesday that in order to keep up with the needs, the state needs to reinstate the $30 registration surcharge that was repealed last year, and increase both tolls and the gas tax.” (Garry Rayno, “State: Transportation Funds Inadequate for Current Need,” New Hampshire Union Leader, 2/15/2012)

Governor Lynch wrote a letter to the House Public Works Committee saying anything short of this plan would be “complacent.”  Yet, just last year even the Obama Administration came out in opposition to a gas tax increase because “people can little afford to buy a gallon of gasoline, let alone if we were to raise the tax on it.” (Link to Video)

“[L]ast week price trackers told USA Today to expect gasoline at $4 a gallon by this spring.  Tom Kloza of the Oil Price Information Service told the newspaper that this spring will be chaotic, with huge price increases in some places and a peak average price of $4.05 a gallon.  Other analysts made similar predictions.” (Mark Hayward, “Granite State Gas Prices Heading to $4?” New Hampshire Union Leader, 2/13/2012)