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Biden considering gas tax relief; Nevada won't benefit

Gas Prices
Posted at 10:11 PM, Jun 21, 2022
and last updated 2022-06-22 01:17:26-04

LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — For Michael Natali, the road to a less stressful life seems long right now. The journey takes its toll as gas prices continue to soar to record highs.

"This is getting outlandish. It's too much and we’re suffering," Natali states.

The Biden Administration may soon support a gas tax holiday pause to provide some relief. The congressional bill proposal would halt the federal gas tax and bring down costs by about 14.72 cents per gallon.

AAA of Southern Nevada notes that while the proposal could bring gas prices down, it will only be a drop in the tank.

"We have seen record-high prices and prices continuing to go up or remain flat since early May," explains AAA representative John Treanor

Any drop in price is welcome but current Nevada law won’t let Nevadans benefit from the gas tax holiday bill if it passes because the State automatically raises fuel tax to make up for any federal reduction. Any change would require an amendment to state law. That means a special session of the Nevada Legislature.

Nevada State Senator James A. Settelmeyer is fighting for Nevadans to see relief at the pump. Settelmeyer hand-delivered a letter last month to Nevada Governor Steve Sisolak asking he convene Nevada lawmakers. Nevadans would see no benefit if a gas tax holiday were issued.”

The letter reads in part.

“I ask that you convene a special session of the Nevada legislature to address the fuel price crisis in Nevada.”
Nevada State Senator James A. Settelmeyer

Senator Settlemeyer says that amending state law to implement the gas tax holiday benefit would not take away money from state road maintenance and repair. Instead, he suggests the state dip into surplus funds.

"Nevada received a huge pot of money from the federal level for infrastructure so what about using that to offset the gas tax funds temporarily,” said Settlemeyer.

So far, the senator says the governor has not responded to his letter.

The governor’s office sent a statement to Channel 13 saying in part:

“The state is waiting further information on what may happen at the federal level in regards to a gas tax holiday or other measures.”
Office of Steve Sisolak

For people like Michael, any relief for his bottom line can’t come soon enough.

"It’s going to take at least a few dollars to become affordable to a lot of people. At a certain point, it starts hindering what you’re able to do. I have to get from point A to point B. Well now I have to pay more in gas so I can’t buy X or Y. You have to budget all that now," says Natali.

President Biden said he would decide if he supports the gas tax holiday proposal by the end of this week.