A New Gas Tax, But What's It Paying For?

Jul 1, 2013

You ever notice how gas prices tend to rise, just when we’re all on the road for summer get-aways?

Well, starting today, we’ll see the prices go even higher – as a Connecticut tax goes up.  It’ll give the state some of the highest prices in the country – but at least that extra revenue will pay to repair the roads…or, not.

See, this is just one of the many confounding things about gas policy in the US, and in the country. For instance, when gas prices go up, we tend to drive less. This is how the rest of the world does it - tax the heck out of gas, keep people off the roads, and plow the money you make in taxes into transportation.

But in Connecticut, this new tax money is going into the general fund of the state budget.

Meanwhile, the federal government is pushing for more fuel-efficient cars. Good, right? But what happens to that tax stream when people buy less gas?

Today, where we live, the economics and politics of gas policy - along with what we can learn about human behavior at the pump.

 This program was produced by Jules Lefevre.