California Drivers Worried Over Idea of Another Gas Tax Hike

SACRAMENTO -- President Donald Trump’s idea of raising the federal gas tax by 25 cents per gallon to pay for his infrastructure plan is bringing mixed reviews by his own supporters.

The possible federal gas tax increase was a non-starter for those already looking for the cheapest gas in town.

“I don’t have a job, so gas prices are already super high and it’s hard to keep gas in my car sometimes," said local driver Langston Major.

“Everything’s going up except for the wages," said Joey Jones.

The possible increase more than doubles the current federal gas tax of 18 cents per gallon. California got a jump on raising money for road repairs by upping the state tax 12 cents per gallon just last November. Many drivers thought that was already too much.

Even those willing to pay the state increase wince at the number being floated by the president.

“I mean 12 is good, no problem, nothing wrong with that. But 25, that’s a lot," said driver Izatollah Wali.

Trump has promised to put more money into the country’s aging infrastructure to the tune of $1.5 trillion. But he has struggled to come up with ways to raise the money.

Unlike the state gas tax increase, a Trump gas tax may be allocated for infrastructure projects outside of California.

“If it goes to the federal government, then they can do whatever they want with it, which may or may not help our roads in California," said Chris Weinel.

Right now, all the indications are that President Trump is just willing to consider the 25-cent tax increase. It’s certainly not a done deal, especially not during an election year.

Some of the president’s supporters in Congress believe the political capital earned by passing the tax reform bill will be washed away with a gas tax increase, which would kill Republicans at the polls.

By all accounts, Governor Jerry Brown used all his considerable political moxie to pass California's 12-cent-gas-tax increase. Yet, a ballot initiative to repeal it is gathering strength.

Other than maybe tax reform, President Trump has yet to demonstrate any persuasive skills at crafting a consensus in Congress. So, what does that mean for his federal gas tax?

"No, not going to happen," Weinel told FOX40.

But then again President Trump has a history of surprising people.

The president's Council of Economic Advisers recently warned that the federal gas tax was not the best way to go to about raising money for roads. It suggested a mileage fee or toll roads would be better, but those options have their own drawbacks.