Georgia Gov. Kemp announces plan to temporarily halt state gas tax
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Republican Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp on Wednesday announced his intention to work with the Georgia General Assembly to "temporarily suspend the state’s excise tax on motor fuel sales."
Citing a more than 55% spike in the average price of a gallon of gas since March 2021, a statement from the governor's office said Kemp will work in conjunction with Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan and House Speaker David Ralston to "take measures to alleviate the burden placed on Georgians."
Georgia Gov. Brian Kemp speaks during a ribbon-cutting ceremony for the Mason Mega Rail Station at the Garden City Port Terminal Nov. 12, 2021, in Garden City, Georgia. (Sean Rayford/Getty Images)
Those measures, according to Kemp's office, will take effect once he signs HB 304 and will remain in effect through May 31, 2022.
Georgia collects a state excise tax of 28.7 cents per gallon, according to the American Petroleum Institute. With federal and state taxes and fees included, Georgians pay 55.95 cents extra per gallon of gas in the Peach State.
"President Biden took office in January of 2021, and to understand why we are in this current state of record-high inflation and costs to the average American family, people can simply track his first year of misguided policy decisions," Kemp said, announcing the plan.
"Because of our strong, fiscally conservative approach to budgeting, Lt. Governor Duncan, Speaker Ralston and I can confidently propose a state motor fuel tax suspension to curb sky-high gas prices while also returning money back to hardworking Georgians through a tax refund and an income tax cut," Kemp added. "With this latest measure, we are making it even more clear that in Georgia we are going to empower families to keep their money in their own pockets."
Both Duncan and Ralston praised Kemp for his leadership on the issue and vowed to help Georgians with the overwhelming financial burden placed on them by rising energy prices in America.
Americans are experiencing the highest gas prices since the 2008 financial crisis, with the national gas price average reaching more than $4 per gallon. (Getty Images)
"I applaud Gov. Kemp for delivering bold leadership that will provide crucial relief for Georgians at the gas pump," Duncan said.
Echoing Duncan's statement, Ralston said he understood that Georgia "families and businesses are hurting from outrageously high gas prices."
Kemp previously suspended the gas tax in Georgia in 2021 amid the shutdown of the Colonial Pipeline.
President Biden told a reporter Tuesday that he "can’t do much right now" about soaring gas prices in the United States, claiming "Russia's responsible."
President Biden wanted credit when gas prices dropped slightly in December, but now claims no responsibility for soaring gas prices. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)
"It’s going to go up," Biden said of the price of gas. "Can’t do much right now. Russia is responsible."
Gasoline prices in America hit a record high this week amid Russia’s continued invasion into Ukraine and the announcement that the United States would suspend purchases of Russian oil.