Georgia Governor Brian Kemp announced that he plans to work with the Georgia General Assembly to temporarily suspend the state’s excise tax on motor fuel sales, according to a Wednesday statement by Kemp’s office.
In Georgia, the average price of a gallon of gas has increased from $2.59 to $4.06 (over 56%) since March of 2021, the press release notes. On Wednesday, the national average price for a gallon of gas hit a record-high of $4.25, according to the American Automobile Association (AAA). Researchers further estimate that the average American household could spend an additional $2,000 a year on gas as a result of increases in fuel cost, on top of record-high inflation already impacting families.
As a result, Governor Kemp, in conjunction with Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan and House Speaker David Ralston, will take measures to alleviate the burden placed on Georgians, according to the press release. The measures will take effect upon the governor’s signature of HB 304 and remain in effect through May 31, 2022.
“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,” Governor Brian Kemp said in a statement. “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. 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.”
Georgia Lieutenant Governor Geoff Duncan applauded Governor Kemp’s efforts to offer relief to Georgians at the pump, saying in a statement, “I look forward to working with Speaker Ralston and my colleagues in the Senate to quickly pass this measure as a counterweight against the extreme rise in gas prices.”
House Speaker David Ralston also released a statement on the matter, saying, “We know that Georgia families and businesses are hurting from outrageously high gas prices. That’s why I’m proud to join Governor Kemp and Lt. Governor Duncan in supporting a temporary suspension of the state’s motor fuel taxes. In these extraordinary times, every little bit helps and we remain focused on keeping our people and our economy moving.”
This is not the first time Governor Kemp has temporarily eliminated the gas tax in his state. In May of 2021, Kemp signed an executive order temporarily eliminating the Peach State’s gas tax, among other measures, after a cyber attack on the Colonial Pipeline halted gas flow to much of the southeast, The Georgia Star previously reported.
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Kaitlin Housler is a reporter at The Georgia Star News and The Star News Network.
Photo “Brian Kemp” by Brian Kemp.