GAO Report Pushes Per-Mile Taxation

Government report argues in favor of implementing some form of per-mile tax, despite inherent inefficiency.
Jan. 11, 2013

The Government Accountability Office (GAO) believes lawmakers should tax motorists for every mile they drive. In a report released Tuesday, the congressional watchdog agency suggested GPS surveillance devices or other, less invasive techniques could be used to more than double the amount of money motorists currently pay in federal gas tax fees.

GAO's auditors examined per-mile tax pilot projects in Minnesota, Nevada, Oregon and Washington to evaluate the benefits and downsides of gas tax replacement programs. At the federal level today, the 18.4 cents per gallon fuel excise tax generates $34 billion for the Highway Trust Fund, a fund GAO says faces future shortfalls as a result of Corporate Average Fuel Economy (CAFE) regulations.

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