Gas tax suspension ends at midnight, Ga. gas prices to rise Wednesday
SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - The gas tax suspension will come to an end in the state of Georgia.
Drivers have not been paying the extra price at the pump since March of last year.
Every time at the pump, you save about 30 cents a gallon. With all the drivers in Georgia over the past 10 months, that adds up to $1.7 billion.
But that’s also the amount of revenue the state of Georgia has missed out on to pay for transportation costs.
However, the state ended the year with a $6.6 billion dollar surplus, and now Governor Brian Kemp plans to dig into that to make up for lost funds from the gas tax.
Dr. Michael Toma, an economics professor from Georgia Southern, says he doesn’t anticipate any impacts to the state’s economy due to the lost revenue from the gas tax suspension lasting so long.
“It has a fairly robust rainy day or reserve fund and I don’t anticipate that the state government would experience a budgetary problem throughout 2023 so I think the state is on very sound fiscal ground, I don’t anticipate any headwinds from the economy on that,” Dr. Toma said.
That’s good news for the state, but for you paying for gas, the news is not so good.
As soon as we hit midnight those prices will jump. Gas stations statewide could jump around 25 cents a gallon first thing Wednesday morning.
Taking a look Tuesday morning – the average in Savannah is around $2.92, the state of Georgia is at $2.80 and the national average is around $3.27.
The head of petroleum analysis at Gas Buddy says with the price jump, the average in Savannah will go up to over $3.00 a gallon but will likely stay below the national average.
“I’ve been citing the fact that China and their reopening plans could push gasoline and oil demand up and that could push prices up so I think it is pretty clear to say now with this gas tax kicking back in Georgians have seen the lowest prices of the year and it is only going to get worse from here,” said Patrick De Haan, Gas Buddy Head of Petroleum Analysis.
The good news is they do not anticipate record prices in 2023 that we saw in 2022.
But prices are expected to continue to rise in the coming months, so be sure to fill up the tank Tuesday and shop around for the lowest prices after they go up at midnight Wednesday.
WTOC spoke to customers at a gas station ahead of the tax suspension ending
People we spoke to today say they have to worry about other expenses being high because of inflation and gas going up won’t help their pockets.
“It’s ridiculous. I’m already paying $4 just for a gallon of gas and I mean that just adds to more living expenses for me.”
“I feel like it’s getting kind of expensive but honestly I don’t really pay attention to it. I guess I need to start.”
“I feel like it’s nonsense because $20 can’t fill up a tank any more. $20 used to get me a full tank. It can’t. It takes $40 to $50 to fill my tank up. That’s not okay.”
Copyright 2023 WTOC. All rights reserved.