May 13, 2008
Legislator Norma Gonsalves (R-LD-13) and the members of the Republican caucus in the Nassau County Legislature have once again introduced legislation calling for relief from rising gasoline prices by eliminating the county sales tax from Memorial Day to Labor Day this summer.
In conjunction with New York State Senators Chuck Fuschillo and Kemp Hannon as well as New York State Assemblymen Rob Walker, David McDonough and Tom McKevitt’s bill to provide relief from the state gasoline tax, the elimination of the county gas tax will make a tremendous impact on drivers’ wallets.
“Gas prices have reached $4 per gallon and people are suffering the impact of a $50-plus tank of gas. We live in a suburban area where we rely on our cars to go everywhere; to the grocery store, to the parks, to work – and even to the train station. Our residents are already overburdened with property and school taxes, which are rising faster than household incomes can withstand. As an elected representative, it is my obligation to seek out ways to provide relief,” said Legislator Gonsalves.
Here’s how it works - if the base rate for a gallon of gas is $3.00, the taxes currently include: $.18 per gallon for federal tax, $.32 per gallon for New York State tax and 4.25% per dollar (or approx $.13 per gallon) for Nassau County tax. Elimination of all 3 taxes would save a driver up to $.63 per gallon of gas, and even more as the base price of gasoline continues to rise. On a 15-gallon tank, a driver can save up to $9.45 or more, every time he or she fills up. For a 2-car household, that’s over $18.90 per week or $265 for the summer! “I am relieved to see that elected officials from multiple tiers of government – federal, state and county – are listening to calls for relief. I believe that we can do this,” said Legislator Gonsalves. “This is may be a short term response to the energy crisis and, it behooves all levels of government, especially the federal government, to pursue a long term solution to this major crisis.”
Although similar legislation was submitted in 2006 and 2007, the present crisis has escalated making it imperative that the Republican delegation submit the legislation once again, on May 12, 2008, urging the new Presiding Officer, Diane Yatauro to place the measure on the calendar for a vote as soon as possible. “Instead of waiting for the federal and state taxes to be reduced, we need to take the lead on this matter. In this economy, every penny counts. We’re calling for relief now,” said Legislator Gonsalves.