Fuel Smarts

Inhofe Bill Addresses Heavy Vehicle Use Tax

May 21, 2001

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U.S. Senator James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.) introduced legislation to provide a pro-rated tax refund to truckers who sell their trucks but have already paid their annual heavy vehicle use tax.

"As truck-drivers continue to feel the heavy burden of rising fuel prices, I want to provide them with some form of relief," Inhofe said. "My bill will balance the tax code by providing a tax refund for those who choose to sell their vehicles after they have already paid the heavy use tax for the year."
Inhofe said the issue was brought to his attention by a constituent. The Used Truck Assn. has also lobbied to make changes to the tax collection method.
Under the current IRS code, when tractor-trailer with a GCWR of more than 75,000 pounds is bought and driven over 5,000 miles in a year, the owner must pay a $550 heavy use tax, according to Inhofe. However, if the owner sells the vehicle in the same year, he or she is unable to receive a refund on this tax, while the person buying the vehicle does not have to pay the tax during that year since it has already been paid.
The Heavy Vehicle Use Tax Equity Act would require the purchaser to pay a pro-rated tax on the vehicle, while the owner will receive a refund for a portion of the tax already paid.
For more background, go to "A Tax Too Far".

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