refueling gas
refueling gas

ANNAPOLIS, Md.—Ahead of the summer travel season, Governor Larry Hogan today called on Comptroller Peter Franchot to immediately take steps to halt or minimize the impact of the legislative gas tax increase that his office is scheduled to announce in the coming days.

Under legislation passed by the General Assembly in 2013, the Comptroller announces gas tax increases on or before June 1 of each year that are set to take effect on July 1. The tax increase is calculated by the Comptroller’s Office.

“This tax increase, while hardship-inducing for Marylanders at any time, is simply unconscionable at this moment when gas prices are already at their highest level in recorded history amid a period of prolonged inflation and economic uncertainty,” writes Governor Hogan in a letter to the comptroller. “I know that you agree we should do more to give Marylanders a break from these punishing prices. That is why it is my hope that you will use every legal and regulatory power at your disposal to halt or minimize the impact of the accelerating gas taxes, and that you consider granting an extension for paying the taxes and removing penalties for unpaid tax, including the revocation of business licenses.”

Past Comptroller Actions. In the letter, the governor notes that the comptroller has been a strong advocate for protecting Marylanders from rising gas prices, and points out that in the past, the comptroller has taken actions to protect Marylanders from impending tax deadlines and burdens. In January of this year, for example, Comptroller Franchot extended the individual income tax filing and payment due date for the third consecutive year, as well as the individual estimated tax payment due dates, to give “breathing room” to Marylanders who were struggling financially.

“Given shaky oil markets, record inflation, and a skyrocketing cost of living, the continued surges in gas prices are inflicting more pain at the pump than Marylanders can bear,” the governor writes. “I am calling on you to take immediate action to provide much-needed relief, particularly as citizens of our state begin to plan their summer travels.”

Also of note, in 2015, the General Assembly rejected the governor’s legislation to permanently suspend increases in the gas tax indexed to inflation. During the 2022 session, the General Assembly failed to act on measures to repeal a portion of the tax (SB0337/HB0144) and to suspend the increases through 2024 (HB1191/SB0737).

Read the letter to Comptroller Franchot, the full text of which is below:

Dear Comptroller Franchot,

It is my understanding that you will soon announce large increases to Maryland’s motor fuel tax. This tax increase, while hardship-inducing for Marylanders at any time, is simply unconscionable at this moment when gas prices are already at their highest level in recorded history amid a period of prolonged inflation and economic uncertainty.

I know that you agree we should do more to give Marylanders a break from these punishing prices. That is why it is my hope that you will use every legal and regulatory power at your disposal to halt or minimize the impact of the accelerating gas taxes, and that you consider granting an extension for paying the taxes and removing penalties for unpaid tax, including the revocation of business licenses. This would be in line with similar actions you have recently taken when you perceive various state laws to be too burdensome on Marylanders; for example, in January of this year, you extended the individual income tax filing and payment due date for the third consecutive year, as well as the individual estimated tax payment due dates, to give “breathing room” to Marylanders who were struggling financially.

In 2015, I proposed legislation to permanently suspend increases to the gas tax, which was unfortunately and shortsightedly rejected by the General Assembly. It was even more unfortunate when the General Assembly failed to pass legislation to prevent further increases to the gas tax during the 2022 session—well into the current inflation crisis—despite proposed bills to repeal a portion of the tax (SB0337 and HB0144) and to suspend the increases through 2024 (HB1191 and SB0737).

These failures make it incumbent on your office to step up and take action to help struggling Marylanders. After consulting with state budget and transportation officials, I am confident that the state can absorb the financial impact of foregoing this ill-conceived and ill-timed tax increase. Given shaky oil markets, record inflation, and a skyrocketing cost of living, the continued surges in gas prices are inflicting more pain at the pump than Marylanders can bear. I am calling on you to take immediate action to provide much-needed relief, particularly as citizens of our state begin to plan their summer travels.

Sincerely,

Larry Hogan
Governor

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12 Comments

  1. Hate to tell you Gov, but there is absolutely no shortage of cars on the road. If gas prices were such a burden the roads wouldn’t be so crowded.

      1. Really? You think all the increased traffic is due to people going to work? Well, that certainly doesn’t fit your narrative that the economy is crashing. Why are there all the warnings to people who will be driving this weekend to avoid the most congested times of the day (which appear to be anytime after 8am and before 9pm)?

  2. Hogan goes hard for Maryland, and will hopefully supplant Trump as the new leader of the lost tribe that is the GOP. May God help them. -An Independant Who Cares

  3. Dear Governor Hogan

    Maybe you should propose the State of Maryland tax electric vehicles by the mile. First taxpayers subsidize the purchase of said vehicles then they use the roads and do not pay to support that infrastructure.

    The bottom line is we are subsidizing the well to do to purchase electric vehicles because the average person can not afford the $40 to $50K for an electric.

  4. So in other words gas here will be $5 a gallon, in the meantime my family in Kentucky is enjoying $3.75 a gallon

  5. No need to worry about gas prices or the extremely high price of replacing gas vehicles for the China/lithium powered EVs, because my President said “We’re going through an incredible transition”. So we suppose that majority who voted for “IT”, will follow his demand like the good little liberal ducklings that they want to be.
    FJB!!!

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