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Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Crappy Solutions: Mileage Tax is NOT the answer

The news tonight featured a bit on a new tax being considered by the state of Minnesota. There are concerns over declining revenues being collected from gas tax. You know, I think gas costing a small fortune per gallon may have actually had an impact. Yup, people did become more aware of their traveling and many folks stopped using their cars and instead used public transit - much cheaper than shilling out nearly $3.00 a gallon. But... uhoh, the government had a loss in their gas tax collection. Were they really surprised by that?

One solution is to implement a mileage tax. Oregon is already testing this tax. An odometer maid can't really come out to your house and check your count though. So how could they track your mileage to charge you? Ah yes, require every resident of the state to have a GPS unit inserted in the car - yes, it'll cost you... all new cars should also be sold already with the unit in place - yes, it will make the car more expensive to buy. Yup, the government can know where you go, at all times, AND they'll charge you for it.

Really, is this the best solution our government has? First of all, I DO not want the government tracking my every move. I do not want a device that could possibly be hacked or tapped into by criminals, terrorists or anyone for that matter. I don't want to be charged for driving my children to school. I don't want to have to pay for the miles I drive to the grocery store. I already pay property taxes, income taxes, gas taxes, federal taxes... Cars aren't cheap either. What about people who live in safer suburbs and deal with long commutes so they can give their families a better - safer place to live...

Does no one else see the multiple different layers of how freaking bad of an idea this is?

Now, some propose that a mileage tax would discourage people from traveling too much and would decrease pollutants in the air. I'm all for improving our world and protecting the planet. I don't think a mileage tax fits that need. If you want to help improve the environment - offer tax breaks for people who buy hybrids. Offer financial organizations tax incentives for loans offered on hybrid vehicles. Help make hybrid vehicles more available and cost effective for low-income and middle-income people... let's be honest, these are the folks that tend to have crappier, smoking cars... these are the folks that may have to live farther away to afford housing, but drive ridiculous distances to get to a job that barely pays enough to cover their bills. A mileage tax is not a conservation effort and don't even try to imply that it is. It's insulting to the people who genuinely care and are trying to make effective and stable changes. A mileage tax is all about the money... and who gets to pocket it.

Should your state be considering a mileage tax and you disagree - contact your congressman or office of the governor and let your voices be heard.

If you live in the state of Minnesota and do not agree with this law, contact the governor:

To contact Governor Tim Pawlenty and Lt. Governor Carol Molnau, please write, phone, fax or e-mail.

Mailing Address:
Office of the Governor
130 State Capitol
75 Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Blvd.
St. Paul, MN 55155
Other ways to reach our office:
Telephone: (651) 296-3391
Toll Free: (800) 657-3717
Facsimile: (651) 296-2089
E-mail: tim.pawlenty@state.mn.us

Here are a couple of articles if you'd like to read more.

Will a mileage tax replace the gas tax?

Oregan's Mileage Tax: A Truly Bad Idea

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1 Comments:

Blogger spyscribbler said...

Holy ****! Are you kidding me? That's inSANE!

9:04 PM  

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