I love this headline from state’s The Olympian: “Innovation needed to solve gas tax problem“. my aunt Minnie! What they want is more taxes. It’s just another benefit from going by buying fuel-efficient cars. The article puts it well:

As state lawmakers begin gathering in Olympia for Monday’s start to the 2013 legislative session, the never-ending quest for new revenue that isn’t-a-tax-increase will continue.

I like that. They have to find a “free” or “invisible” source of additional revenues to cover the shortfall:
As more and more people are turning to all-electric and highly fuel-efficient vehicles, there is a corresponding decline in gas tax revenue. And this creates a conundrum for the state Department of Transportation: how to pay for upgrading and maintaining our roadways.
What about the 37.5 cents per gallon that we are already paying at the pump? Where’s that going? Only 8 cents of it goes to repairs and maintenance. The article doesn’t say where the rest goes, but I can guess.
So, how about those “innovations?” First up, let’s tax the owners of fuel-efficient cars. They’re proposing an increase of $100 per vehicle to be added on to their license renewal fee. But, as in Colorado, they dare not call it a tax. That’s the first innovation.
The next is a “vehicle-use” fee. Owners get to pay so much per mile that they drive. That should about balance out the money they’re saving by driving a fuel-efficient car. Ah, the justice.  Of course that raises all sorts of other issues, like privacy, for instance.
Here’s the conundrum:
We want to encourage fuel efficiency to improve air quality, reduce greenhouse gases and save our planet, not to mention the dream of reducing reliance on fossil fuels and ending our dependency on foreign oil. But we also need to maintain and improve our roadways.
Never fear. Legislators will “innovate.”
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