Drivers, experts react to proposed Ohio gas tax hike

Local News

FAIRBORN. Ohio (WDTN) — Filling up your gas tank in Ohio could cost more if Governor Mike DeWine’s proposed gas tax increase is approved. If approved, it would be the first hike in the gas tax in more than a decade.

Drivers currently pay a tax of 28 cents a gallon for fuel. The governor’s proposal would increase that 64 percent to 46 cents a gallon. Money generated would go towards road repair throughout the state.

“There are a lot of potholes right now that are pretty obvious and there’s infrastructure work that isn’t as obvious that we need to do something about” said Mike Steele, a driver in the Fairborn area.

He said he didn’t mind paying the extra tax dollars.

“The maintenance costs I pay on my car, if my tires are getting beaten up, if my suspension is getting beaten up, that’s probably more than the 18 cents per gallon,” Steele said.

That increase could have consumers cutting costs elsewhere. 

“We’ll be purchasing something else, less and less and less. So from that perspective, it has an impact,” said Riad Ajami, Professor of International Business at Wright State University.

Ajami said there is currently a low cost and high inventory of oil, making it good timing for an increase.

“Governments need to collect revenue so they can do the services you and I demand,” Ajami said.

While not ideal, Professor Ajami said a proposed hike between 10 and 20 cents is reasonable.

“Eighteen cents is a jolt but nevertheless, it’s manageable. It’s manageable in the short term,” he said.

With many variables playing into gas prices, Ajami said that may not always be the case.

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