Gov. Nathan Deal announced last week that he will stop an increase in the motor fuel tax scheduled to go into effect on July 1. Using the formula established in state law, the Department of Revenue determined that average gas prices over the past six months call for the motor fuel tax to rise to 12.9 cents per gallon from 12.1 cents per gallon.
“Today, I signed an executive order that will prevent the motor fuel tax increase set for next month,” Deal said. “We’re seeing a slow and steady rebound in Georgia’s economy, with our unemployment rate going down and state revenues heading up, but Georgians are still paying gas prices that are high by historical standards. The state should not add to that burden at this juncture.”
Every six months, at the start of January and July, the Department of Revenue sets the motor fuel tax based on an average of prices. Prices over the past six months had called for a slight increase. Major fluctuations in the price of gas can trigger an increase or decrease within those six month periods, but this increase is part of the regular six-month schedule set in law.
The governor of Georgia has the power to suspend collection of a tax, but the action requires ratification from the General Assembly.