Haynes is an Assembly member representing Riverside and
He serves on the Appropriations and Budget Committees. [go to
Assembly Member Haynes
website at California Assembly][go to Haynes index]
and Tracking Us For Nothing?
Like this liberal tax scheme's gonna to work…
They are doing it again. The bureaucrats just can't help themselves.
We have been doing what they have been asking for years. We have
been buying fuel efficient cars, jamming ourselves into smaller
driving spaces, cramming our children into smaller back seats,
placing our families at greater risk by getting into lighter
and less safe cars, and saving lots of gasoline. As a result,
the taxes the government collects on gasoline are going down,
and the bureaucrats are mad. So--now they want to tax the number
of miles we drive by putting a tracking system in our car, and
following us around.
For years, gasoline taxes were assessed to build roads. They
were billed as a user's tax. You use the roads when you drive
your car. When you drive your car, you use gas. By taxing gas,
the government is actually directly connecting a service (the
provision of roads) to the use of that service (driving on the
roads). Actually, not a bad idea.
the 1970's, when the Democrats controlled the Legislature and
office, they came up with a hare-brained concept. "We
like mass transit," they said, "but nobody uses it.
So--we will pay for mass transit with gas taxes, and quit building
freeways. That way, freeways will get so crowded that people
will find them uncomfortable, they will stop driving, and use
mass transit." In addition, these same geniuses decided
to use gas tax dollars to study whether or not we should build
freeways. Today, we have thousands of bureaucrats sitting around
thinking about building freeways, and expounding the virtues
of mass transit. We are not building many freeways.
In 1990, voters doubled the gas tax from nine to eighteen cents
under the promise that this money would go to building freeways.
All that happened is that we now have more bureaucrats studying
whether or not to build freeways. Lots of thinking--no building.
government makes as much money off of the sale of each gallon
of gas as
the oil companies. You pay for the gas,
then pay another eighteen cents a gallon to the federal government
in taxes, and eighteen cents a gallon to the state in tax. In
addition, we all pay an additional sales tax for each gallon
(averaging another eighteen cents today). The sales tax is calculated
on the price of the gas, which includes the gallonage taxes paid
to the state and federal government—paying a tax on the
the voters passed Proposition 42 which required the sales tax
on gas to
be spent on "transportation," but
after four years, the state has never followed the mandates of
Proposition 42. The state still spends that money on free health
care for illegal aliens. We still sit on crowded freeways.
Now, the bureaucrats are thinking about charging us a tax on
each mile we drive, and they are thinking about sticking a GPS
tracker in our cars to find out how many miles we drive and on
which roads we drive them. Let's forget about the problem with
the government knowing everywhere we drive (a big privacy problem),
think about how stupid this idea is.
First, we will now have a reduced incentive to save gas. Personally,
I would rather drive a big, safe gas guzzler, but the 54 cents
in taxes I pay on that guzzler makes me think twice about miles
per gallon when I buy a new car. If I am going to be taxed on
miles driven, I say let's pollute again.
is a tax increase. These bureaucrats are worried about losing
because we are saving gas. We drive uncomfortable,
unsafe cars to save gas and, quite frankly, to save money on
gas and taxes, and the government rewards us by creating a new
tax! And what will the new overhead be? How much will it cost
to install and maintain each unit and hire the people to compute
the taxes on the 30 million registered vehicles on the road today?
More than the gas tax, I’d bet.
Third, people will again develop ways to avoid the tax. People
already avoid the car tax by registering their cars out of state.
How many more people will start doing that to avoid the GPS tax
collector? And what do we do about tourists? In the current system,
everybody who drives a gas-powered vehicle on our roads pays
the tax to maintain them. Under the new system, everyone who
drives to California from somewhere else will be driving tax
we are getting taxed for roads the bureaucrats and social engineers
want to build anyways. Three years ago,
Governor Gray Davis announced that the era of freeway construction
was over. Really, it was over 20 years ago, and we are paying
the price for their foolishness. I can think of two freeways
or major highways that need to be built in my district alone—and
I’m certain other areas of the state are in the same position.
I don't want
to be tracked, and I don't want to be taxed for the tracking.
drive if I want, I'll pay the tax on gas if
I'm forced to, I just wish they would make my life a little easier
by building the roads they promised. Do you really think government
will actually keep the promise it makes when it takes our money
this time? If so, I’ve got a brand new Hybrid Hummer I’d
love to sell you...CRO