Hogan, Maryland legislative leaders agree to halt state gas tax for 30 days
Maryland Gov. Larry Hogan (R) and top lawmakers agreed to halt the state’s gas tax for 30 days in an effort to cushion the financial impact on residents as gas prices continue to rise following the United States’s ban on Russian energy imports, The Associated Press reported.
Maryland state House Speaker Adrienne Jones (D) and Maryland state Senate President Bill Ferguson (D) issued a joint statement on Thursday evening, saying the development comes as Maryland’s revenue projections have increased for both the current and upcoming fiscal year.
“This swift action will help ease the financial burden on everyday Marylanders while keeping the pressure on Vladimir Putin and the Russian oligarchs who have enabled him,” the two lawmakers said. “We look forward to working with the Governor in the coming days to relieve the pressure on Marylanders’ pocketbooks while ensuring our long-term fiscal health.”
“We look forward to the General Assembly getting this bill to the governor’s desk,” Michael Ricci, a spokesperson for Hogan, said, quote-tweeting the statement.
Earlier on Thursday, Hogan said in a statement he was working with “legislative partners” to issue an emergency pause on the state’s gas tax, adding that “we also support ongoing efforts in the legislature to suspend automatic increases in the gas tax.”
Prices at the pump are expected to further increase for Americans after the White House earlier this week announced it would be banning Russian imports of oil, natural gas and coal to further isolate Russia’s economy.
A Wall Street Journal poll earlier this week showed that 79 percent of Americans surveyed — including 88 percent of Democrats and 77 percent of Republicans — supported banning U.S. purchases of Russian oil, even if doing so would lead to an increase in energy prices for Americans.
The Hill has reached out to Hogan’s office for comment.