Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

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Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby resigned » 2008 Jan 16 08:05

Following is an editorial from the Rockbridge Weekly. I thought it was great and feel we all need to write letters to Gov. Kaine to protest this raise in car taxes. I would suggest that all who read this forum write letters via his web site. If anyone has a better suggestion please post them. We cannot afford to have any more taxes and I am sure there are many who participate in this forum who cannot afford it either.

ROCKBRIDGE WEEKLY EDITORIAL
When we elect representatives to the legislature and governor’s job, we have a reasonable expectation that they’ll use logic and statistics to back up proposed moves on such items as taxation.

After reading the words of Gov. Tim Kaine with respect to how to help fund much-need road maintenance, logic and common sense doesn’t seem to be at the forefront of the debate.

On the one hand, very punitive and probably constitutionally illegal policies were put in place to punish Virginia drivers for bad driving behavior (but not their out-of-state equals). In some cases, fees and fines could reach into the thousands. Since that silly approach apparently isn’t yielding the expected $65 million per year that was estimated, Mr. Kaine proposes that the government go from bad to worse by proposing that the sales tax on vehicles be changed from 3% to 5%.

This is exactly the kind of move most conservative minded Virginians fear from a Democrat: ‘tax what you can without regard to effect.’ Mr. Kaine’s bean counters have not, at least to our knowledge, provided detailed statistics on the overall impact of such a move, merely an estimate of increased revenue based on recent sales transactions. With the auto industry having more than its share of problems these days, does it make sense to arbitrarily raise the cost of purchasing a new or used car? No, it does not!

Many Virginians are forced to use their vehicles to get to and from work and thus, increasing the cost of updating this form of transportation at the same time that other taxes, the cost of fuel, education and health care are rising, is a terrible move. In fact, such a proposal, especially since it was not coupled with any serious and comprehensive strategy to streamline state government expenditures, seems totally out of touch.

We’d agree with one thing, however, it would be simple. Simple-minded, we mean. It’s nothing less than a governmental cash grab, proposed at the worst possible time.

Perhaps Gov. Kaine is not aware that, also, the price of the average vehicle has been climbing in recent years and this fact alone has resulted in increased revenues at the same 3% rate based on those higher prices?


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Wise One
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby Wise One » 2008 Jan 17 16:41

beckonwood wrote:... We cannot afford to have any more taxes ...
This is the Republican mantra, coming from people living in a highly affluent country with the lowest taxes in the developed world. I don't buy it. People seem always to find a way to buy multi ton SUVs, $5 lattés, cigarettes, etc. but claim only poverty when asked to pay their fair share of the cost of driving their cars, insisting that "someone else" pay instead. There is no one else.

That said, I think an additional tax on gasoline is the best and most equitable way to spread the total cost of driving a car on the public highways. The gasoline tax should be much higher, and should be expressed as a percentage of the sales price, not a fixed rate per gallon. Europeans pay a gasoline tax over $2 a gallon, excellent public policy, and that's one of the reasons they are out-competing us economically.

rockbridge weekly wrote: ... very punitive and probably constitutionally illegal policies were put in place to punish Virginia drivers for bad driving behavior (but not their out-of-state equals)... that silly approach apparently isn’t yielding the expected $65 million per year that was estimated, Mr. Kaine proposes that the government go from bad to worse by proposing that the sales tax on vehicles be changed from 3% to 5%.
I can agree the system of fines was silliness in the extreme. Fines should never be relied on primarily as a revenue raising device, but should be used as a behavioral incentive. If the legislature decides a practice should be discouraged, it is the height of hypocrisy to deem the same behavior by out-of-staters as OK.

It is reasonable, fair, and equitable to levy the same tax, 5%, on cars as on everything else, especially in view of all the costs and damages that the use of a car offloads onto the rest of us. The user/polluter should pay the full cost of his choice.

rockbridge weekly wrote:Many Virginians are forced to use their vehicles to get to and from work and thus, increasing the cost of updating this form of transportation ...
Bullfeathers. We are "forced" to use vehicles mainly because niggardly Republicans will not raise the necessary public funds to create alternatives to the private car, and to restrict development so as to obviate more and more, longer and longer commutes. :hmm:
"If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like Donald Trump."

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fangz1956
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby fangz1956 » 2008 Jan 17 18:32

From KRVN in Nebraska:

Raising Gasoline Tax Proposed
Published Wednesday, January 16, 2008 at 04:34 AMThe 12-member National Surface Transportation Policy and Revenue Study Commission has recommended the almost doubling of the federal gasoline tax over the next five years. The increase would come in increments of 5 cents to 8 cents per year. The rate would be indexed thereafter to the rate of change in construction costs. The increased tax would help support an upgrade of our nation’s infrastructure. That push peaked with the collapse of an interstate highway bridge in Minneapolis last August 1st.

Commissioner Jack Schenendorf says the gas tax increase was only one of many funding proposals considered - but is the best short-term solution to jumpstart an overhaul of the nation’s infrastructure. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman James Oberstar of Minnesota is sympathetic to raising the gas tax.

President Bush and GOP lawmakers fiercely oppose increasing the 18.4 cents per gallon federal tax, which has not changed since 1993. Congress is unlikely to address the issue in an election year, especially in light of projections that gasoline prices will top $3.50 a gallon this summer. Congress is expected to tackle the next highway bill in 2009. The Committee recommends a national study into a transition to a fee based on the number of miles that vehicles are driven.


This seems like the most viable way to take care of our aging infrastructure. Personally, I would like to see affordable and sane mass transportation but don't see that happening here. This valley is totally dependent of automobiles. Even with Valley Metro (the bus system) we are still automobile dependent. I would gladly take the bus to and from work but they don't run after 9 p.m. and they don't run on Sundays.

I guess we have truly become like the lyrics from Queen:

"I'm in love with my car
I've got a feel for my automobile........"


:wink:
Ever looked at someone and thought "the wheel is turning but the hamster is dead"?

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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby resigned » 2008 Jan 17 18:47

I don't know where you are looking when you drive about our fair country, but I have to tell you I have been all over, I've seen the affluent but I have seen many areas that are poor and improvished. I will agree with you that I find no matter how poor someone is the always mange to buy their cigarettes. My husband feels we need more taxes on gas, I just feel that we have more than paid our fair share of taxes over the years and get a little tired when they start talking about raising the taxes. I am more than willing to pay taxes, and don't feel that others should pay instead. As for the Republican mantra, this was coming from me and only me.

We are both retired now, but when we worked, we both paid more than our fair share of taxes. The amount coming from my salary would have been enough to pay another person's salary.

My son makes an excellent salary on his job and believe me he pays allot in taxes. I believe Congress needs to stop the pork barrell spending. I also feel the illegal immigrants are costing our country a great deal of money.

As for alternatives to driving in private cars, other alternatives could have been implemented a long time ago, not just during the past 8 years. We have gone far too long without good public transportation which extends back through several adminnistrations. As for your final comment on Republicans, I believe you could have had a better choice of words.

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Wise One
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby Wise One » 2008 Jan 17 19:29

Thanks for your response, Beckonwood ... always interesting to hear your view.

As for the choice of words, niggardly seems precisely the correct word to me.

:wink: It's the party platform. :wink:
"If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like Donald Trump."

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fangz1956
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby fangz1956 » 2008 Jan 19 08:25

Gee...............nice to know that all kinds of folks cast aspersions on the impoverished and working poor of this great nation of ours. So what if they smoke? Who really gives a ratz azz about that and it is a diversion from the topic at hand.

Perhaps we should look at who profits the most from the current situation.............Big Oil, Corporate America and the cronies in government who are lined up with their greedy, grubby paws out when their buddies are elected. That is not tax money that is running up the price at the pump. That is greed and gouging by the the major oil producers. If you think not, then you can explain to me why the gas in the underground tanks that cost $2.81 yesterday can cost $2.88 today. It's the same gas that was there yesterday. Put the blame where it freaking belongs already.

Granted, there are saner solutions for taxes than the current system we are cracking under. It's not just earmarks and porkbarrel spending that are the problem. All the damn tax loopholes need to be closed and the wealthiest folks in this country need to begin paying their fair share of taxes................including every Tom, Dick and Harry that sets up a "church", gains non-profit and tax-exempt status and then proceeds to live high on the hog as a result. This is the kind of insanity that needs to stop.

Some measure of taxation is necessary for maintenance of infrastructure and for the construction and development of new highways and bridges. But it is the wasting of that tax money that has to stop. Hmmmmm..............I think a good place to begin would be to take away legislative salaries and benefits that WE the people pay for. If these people are truly intersted in SERVING the people, let them serve for free and then we'll see who steps up to bat.


:2cent:
Ever looked at someone and thought "the wheel is turning but the hamster is dead"?

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Wise One
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby Wise One » 2008 Jan 19 12:57

fangz1956 wrote:I think a good place to begin would be to take away legislative salaries and benefits that WE the people pay for. If these people are truly interested in SERVING the people, let them serve for free and then we'll see who steps up to bat.

I'm no fan of self-serving politicians but if we, literally, take away legislative salaries and benefits, we guarantee that we will have only legislators bought and paid for by monied parties, or wealthy individuals disinclined to listen to voice of the people.

:| Probably not an improvement. :|
"If your only tool is a hammer, every problem looks like Donald Trump."

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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby resigned » 2008 Jan 19 19:09

fangz1956 wrote:Gee...............nice to know that all kinds of folks cast aspersions on the impoverished and working poor of this great nation of ours. So what if they smoke? Who really gives a ratz azz about that and it is a diversion from the topic at hand.

Beckonwood's answer. (I can't figure out this quote thing and am too tired to try.)
I don't believe I was casting aspersions on the impoverished and working poor. I happened to have come from the working poor. I was born and raised in the Ozark Mountains. We didn't get electricity until I was 11. I milked cows before I went to school and when I returned. We ate rabbit, corn meal mush, squirrel, catfish to name a few and butchered hogs and cattle for our meat. Many of my school dresses were made from feed sacks. We did without a lot. When I see people who would rather buy cigarettes than food, especially when they have children then I feel that is a sorry state of affairs. We had a neighbor who was very poor, I sent him home cooked meals, we gave him money, took him to the doctors, bought his medicine, yet he always had money for cigarettes. I could never understand that. He couldn't pay his bills, yet he could pay to smoke. Somehow that was something I just couldn't hack. Call me whatever you want, but that is how I feel. Smoking seems to be your sore point but I feel strongly about the issue, just as you feel strongly about your opinions.

[quotePut the blame where it freaking belongs already.]
I don't believe I put the blame anywhere, Just made some observations.

As for what the wealthy get away with, my son and daughter in law make very good salaries which put them in the so called wealthy bracket and they more than pay their fair share of taxes. I remember when I was employed, the amount of taxes that came out of my paycheck could have been someone else's salary.

Life gets tedious at times and there certainly are alot of ills in our country, but no matter what I wouldn't live anywhere else. Maybe I look at alot of things through different glasses than others.

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fangz1956
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby fangz1956 » 2008 Jan 19 20:56

Hey W.O!!

Isn't that what we already have? Politicians and government leaders bought and owned by the monied elite? After all, the elections have become a money game......no real issues......just sound bytes spun by spin doctors and it all comes down to $$$$$$$.

:hmm:
Ever looked at someone and thought "the wheel is turning but the hamster is dead"?

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Callyinva
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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby Callyinva » 2008 Jan 20 08:48

I hope you don't mind me jumping in and stirring the pot a little. I've tried to look at it from all points. But, I do feel like raising gas tax will only end up adding to the welfare roll. This is just my opinion, but if you stop and look at all the industry that has closed in Buena Vista, Alleghany County and Covington. Those people who have lost their jobs have had to pick up and leave to start a new life. Some can't afford to move given the prices of homes in those areas verses other areas. So they resort to driving an hour or two. I've met several that are doing that right now and they have flat out told me. Gas gets any higher I'll quit and set on my butt and find a way to get welfare. And welfare is a very sore subject with me. I worked in a industry for years that I would see the same people day in day out buying their liquor with 50's and 100's made under the table, with snotty kids in tow, looking like they hadn't taken a bath in weeks, let alone eaten in days and well over half of them would have those little green cards, (you know the ones that ENTITLE you to food stamps) proudly displayed in clear sight. Some would even brag about it. I am in no means saying that everyone on welfare abuses the system so don't even go there. But, if I had my way, I'd have a database of the welfare roll uploaded to the VA ABC stores and if they BUY BOOZE! THEY LOOSE! Bet you could fix a few roads with that!

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Re: Raising car taxes from 3% to 5%

Postby resigned » 2008 Jan 20 09:57

That would be booze and cigarettes.