Connect with us

News

Ohio governor OKs gas, diesel tax increase to repair roads

Published

on

Gov. Mike DeWine initially sought an increase of 18 cents a gallon for gas and diesel fuel and urged lawmakers not to reduce it. (The Trucker file photo)

COLUMBUS, Ohio — Republican Gov. Mike DeWine has signed a transportation budget that increases Ohio’s tax on gas by 10.5 cents a gallon and the tax on diesel fuel by 19 cents to maintain deteriorating roads and bridges.

The new tax rates start July 1. The increases mean Ohioans will pay a state tax rate of 38.5 cents per gallon on gas and 47 cents a gallon on diesel fuel.

DeWine declined to veto other provisions of the bill, including one that allows for the removal of front license plates starting July 1, 2020. Some law enforcement groups oppose that change.

The measure also sets fees at $200 for alternative vehicles and $100 for hybrid vehicles.

The increases, contained in the state transportation budget, would mean more than $850 million more per year for road and bridge projects. The final deal also sends 45% of the revenue from the tax increase to local governments, up from the 40% they get on the current gas tax.

DeWine initially sought an increase of 18 cents a gallon for gas and diesel fuel and urged lawmakers not to reduce it. He called his proposal a “minimalist approach” that was necessary to fix the most serious problems as soon as possible.

“This was a job that no one relished,” DeWine said Tuesday at a press conference with legislative leaders. “This was something that, frankly, had to be done if this state is going to move forward.”

The House then passed an increase of 10.7 cents for gas and 20 cents for diesel fuel, while the Senate pushed for an increase of only 6 cents a gallon on both.

DeWine and Republican House Speaker Larry Householder then announced they had reached a deal under which the gas tax would rise by 11 cents a gallon and diesel fuel by 20 cents. But Senate lawmakers had not agreed to it.

Sen. Matt Dolan, a Chagrin Falls Republican, said senators held firm out of respect for Ohio drivers. He said every penny of gas tax raises $67 million.

Householder called it “a good compromise.”

“I think this is a reasonable approach. I think (for) the average Ohio driver, the effect is going to be less than $55 a year,” he said, adding, “The increase will go a long way to bring us forward as far as our infrastructure needs, and so it was necessary.”

Not everyone was pleased, however.

Republican state Rep. Niraj Antani, of Miamisburg, said the state had more than enough money between its rainy-day fund and budget surplus to fund infrastructure improvements.

“Raising taxes is the least creative solution ever used in government. The citizens of Ohio demand of us to do what is hard,” he said. Antani said separating of the gas and diesel taxes would hit the trucking industry hard and “haunt our community for decades.”

Fix Our Roads Ohio, a coalition representing local governments, transportation businesses and other stakeholders in the state’s road system, praised the compromise.

Spokesman Curt Steiner said it “will help ODOT avoid a crippling financial shortfall, fund needed maintenance and provide funding for priority highway improvement projects.”

Ohioans currently pay state tax of 28 cents on gas and the same for diesel fuel. Ohio hasn’t raised its state gas tax since 2005.

The compromise transportation bill also allows Ohio drivers to remove front license plates starting July 1, 2020. It also would set fees for alternative vehicles at $200 and $100 for hybrid vehicles.

Continue Reading
Advertisement
Click to comment

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

News

Mexican officials uncover smuggling ring using truck disguised as freight companies

Published

on

Some trucks used in the smuggling ring had air conditioning units, but didn't use them when carrying migrants. (FOTOSEARCH)

MEXICO CITY — Mexican officials said Monday they have uncovered an industrial-scale migrant smuggling ring using tractor-trailer rigs disguised as freight deliveries for major companies.

President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador said authorities found a tractor-trailer disguised with the logo of a major grocery store chain. But instead of groceries, it was carrying about 150 migrants.

‘The (grocery) company has filed a complaint, because it was fake, it was camouflage to transport migrants,” Lopez Obrador said.

In June, Mexico detected five freight trucks carrying 925 migrants, almost all from Central America. Some of those trucks bore the logos of well-known firms, though it was not clear if those trucks were also fakes or had been used illegally by drivers without the companies’ knowledge.

Foreign Relations Secretary Marcelo Ebrard said that four or five of the freight trucks found in June belonged to the same independent trucking company, based in central Mexico.

Ebrard said the company operated trucks equipped with air conditioning units, but didn’t turn on the ventilation when carrying migrants.

That led officials to believe it was just a matter of time before migrants would die aboard the overcrowded vehicles.

“The biggest concern is that there is going to be a tragedy, that is what we don’t want,” said Lopez Obrador.

Continue Reading

News

3 Estes Express employees steal $23,000 worth of water heaters

Published

on

COLUMBIA, S.C. — Richland County Sheriff’s Department says they have arrested three employees of a delivery company, after discovering $23,000 worth of stolen inventory in one of their homes.

Officials became suspicious when some retail stores reported that not all of the products supposedly being shipped from Home Depot’s West Columbia distribution center were reaching their final destination.

An investigation by the Sheriff’s Department and officials from Home Depot and Estes Express Line led authorities to get a search warrant for the home of Cody Bessinger. That is when they found more than $23,000 worth of stolen water heaters that Bessinger and two other thieves reportedly accumulated over one years time.

Authorities arrested Bessinger, along with Joe Gunter and Chris Shumpert, who were both managerial employees for Estes Express Line.

This begs the question…”why water heaters”?

Could it be that besides working for Estes Express Line, these guys had a clandestine plumbing operation on the side?

You might even say these three men are in hot water.

 

Continue Reading

News

FMCSA seeks comments on definitions of agri, livestock commodities in HOS rules

Published

on

The FMCSA has received several requests recently from agricultural and livestock haulers seeking exemption from certain aspects of the Hours of Service rule. (©2019 FOTOSEARCH)  

WASHINGTON – The Federal Motor Carrier Safety Administration Monday said it is seeking public comment on revising agricultural commodity or livestock definitions in Hours of Service regulations.

The agency said it worked closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) on this effort to provide clarity for the nation’s farmers and commercial drivers.

The FMCSA has received several requests recently from agricultural and livestock haulers seeking exemption from certain aspects of the HOS rule.

“The agriculture industry is vital to our nation and we look forward to receiving input that will help clarify these definitions, improve safety and offer additional flexibility to farmers and commercial drivers,” said U.S. Transportation Secretary Elaine L. Chao.

“The current regulations impose restrictions upon the agriculture industry that lack flexibility necessary for the unique realities of hauling agriculture commodities,” said U.S. Agriculture Secretary Sonny Perdue. “We look forward to continuing to work with Secretary Chao on revising these regulations.”

Currently, during harvesting and planting seasons as determined by each state, drivers transporting agricultural commodities, including livestock, are exempt from the HOS requirements from the source of the commodities to a location within a 150-air-mile radius from the source.

The advanced rule (ANPRM) authored by FMCSA was prompted by indications that the current definition of these terms may not be understood or enforced consistently when determining whether the HOS exemption applies.

“FMCSA has worked closely with the agriculture industry and USDA in crafting this advanced notice. We have heard concerns from the industry, and we are acting,” said FMCSA Administrator Raymond P. Martinez.  “We encourage all CMV stakeholders, especially those involved in transporting agricultural commodities and livestock, to provide valuable feedback on how the current definitions impact safety, compliance, and enforcement.”

FMCSA continues to work closely with the U.S. Department of Agriculture to eliminate confusion and align the agencies’ agricultural commodity definitions.

The American agriculture industry contributes more than $1 trillion annually to the nation’s economy.

The FMCSA said in a news release that the Trump administration has been working to strengthen the agriculture industry by streamlining regulations, bolstering farm programs, and renegotiating the outdated North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) with the signing of the United States-Mexico-Canada Agreement (USMCA) to improve access to Canadian and Mexican markets.

Additional information on the ANPRM, including how to submit comments to the Federal Register docket, is available at https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/hours-service/hours-service-drivers-definition-agricultural-commodity.

In June 2018, FMCSA announced regulatory guidance for transportation of agricultural commodities. Learn more at https://www.fmcsa.dot.gov/regulations/regulatory-guidance-concerning-transportation-agricultural-commodities.

 

 

 

Continue Reading

Trending

what is a gestational surrogate

how to become a surrogate mother Ukraine

www.alumix.com.ua