Yesterday the coalition of citizens groups from the twelve states that
would be affected by the multi-state compact, the Transportation Climate
Initiative (TCI), released an open letter on our mutual opposition
position. This was done in anticipation of TCI’s Final Memorandum of
Understanding due to be released any day now.
Citizens for Limited Taxation is a member of the opposition to this
backdoor and unaccountable tax hike on gas and diesel fuels.
Our open letter in part states:
Make no mistake, this is a tax. More precisely, it is a carbon dioxide
emissions tax being implemented through a gas tax. But unlike motor fuel
taxes levied to pay for roads, bridges, and transportation
infrastructure (a reasonable fee for use), the TCI would be the
equivalent of a “sin tax” – a penalty for engaging in what some consider
bad behavior. We do not believe that driving to and from work,
transporting children to school, transporting goods, going to the
grocery store, and all the other necessary activities that generally
require a vehicle should be treated by governments as a sin; especially
in these uncertain times. Fewer people than ever are commuting to work
and travel is based on necessity more than leisure.
addition, the TCI will also increase state and municipal spending, as
public services such as snow plowing, collecting trash, and transporting
school children will be burdened with significantly higher fuel costs.
Across the country, state and local governments are suffering budget
deficits and lawmakers are already faced with making tough budget cuts
or looking at ways to increase funding through new and increased taxes.
An added burden of the magnitude of TCI is unwise and lacks fiscal
prudence. . . .
Citizens in TCI states can expect to be hit with higher personal costs,
higher costs for goods and services, and higher taxes. By their nature,
gas taxes are among the most regressive of taxes a state is capable of
levying. . . . Economically speaking, this is bad policy. Morally
speaking, it is simply cruel.
Baker – the leading advocate for TCI – unilateral authority to join this
multi-state TCI compact is now in the Climate Change conference
committee. Some legislators are pushing to have some say over whether
or not Massachusetts should enter this multi-state compact.
CLT and its
members strongly believe TCI is unwise and unnecessary, yet another
burden on citizens of the commonwealth especially in a time of stress,
hardship, and economic uncertainty.
nonetheless, Beacon Hill is intent on imposing this further burden on
its constituents, at the very least it should happen only with consent
of the people through their elected representatives,” said Chip Ford,
executive director if Citizens for Limited Taxation, “Not unilaterally
by one man, akin to a royal monarchy.
find/download a copy of our coalition’s letter