The trucking industry is trying hard to get rid of weight-distance taxes in New York and Oregon, but it faces some stumbling blocks.
In New York, state senators unanimously voted earlier this month to get rid of the state's ton-mile tax and raise truck registration fees by 50% to make up for the lost revenue. However, the measure faces an uphill battle in the Democrat-controlled General Assembly, which in the past has favored upholding the tax. So far, no companion bill has been introduced.
The New York State Motor Truck Assn. says the industry would save $80 million if the ton-mile tax was abolished. The group says registration fees are fairer and less of a hassle to deal with.
On the other side of the country, the state House passed a bill that would increase gasoline taxes by 6 cents per gallon, as well as increase and continue the current weight-mile tax for trucks. A bill to replace it with a 25-cents-a-gallon diesel tax and higher truck registration fees didn't make it out of the House Revenue Committee. Trucking lobbyists are working to revise their proposal to get the votes they need.
Sen. Marylin Shannon, chairwoman of the Senate Transportation Committee, has said she will work to get a weight-mile repeal going in the Senate, but it has yet to schedule hearings on the issue.