Governor Lamont Talks Possibility of Expanding Diesel Tax Relief
(WFSB) – While state lawmakers have suspended the gasoline tax, there is no pause on diesel unless the vehicles are used for farming.
On Friday, Gov. Ned Lamont was again asked if he would extend the tax relief to all diesel.
The owner of Jonathan Edwards Winery in North Stonington said that even with diesel tax relief, the cost of diesel itself is high.
This adds to the cost of doing business.
The winery has 20 acres of grapes, and they depend on tractors and trucks to make wine.
They have several trucks that all use diesel, and if they had to pay a 40 cent tax, that would be a real challenge.
“We have five tractors and trucks etc, so soaring diesel prices are making it more difficult. You have to make tough decisions about how many laps you’re going to do in the vineyard,” said owner Jonathan Edwards.
Edwards feels lucky. As an agricultural business, he does not have to pay the tax.
But everyone who uses diesel has to pay this tax and from July 1, the diesel tax increases.
Companies that rely on diesel say the extra expense will be significant.
“We are currently facing a diesel tax increase on July 1, we are facing a mileage tax on all of our vehicles on January 1 combined if we sell 15 million gallons and we are looking at another tax increase 10 to 15 cents per gallon is one and a half million more in taxes,” said Katie Childs, vice president of Tuxis Ohrs.
Republican gubernatorial candidate Bob Stefanowski joined Childs in urging state lawmakers to do more to help such businesses.
Gov. Ned Lamont said he favors helping Connecticut businesses, not big oil companies.
“I would like to help companies, not necessarily intermediaries. Truckers are having unprecedented profits, not small businesses in Connecticut, but truckers going in and out of the state,” Lamont said.
This week, Republican lawmakers urged the governor and Democrats to return for a special session to extend the gasoline tax suspension to diesel.
Connecticut has a Hard Days Fund of more than $3 billion and a surplus of nearly $1 billion.
This year, Lamont and Democrats pushed for the largest tax cut package in state history: $650 million.
Lamont said when the gas tax suspension ends Dec. 1, he may consider looking at the diesel tax.
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