The national average price of gas is inching
towards $4 per gallon, while Illinois still averages $4.56 per gallon.
National gas prices have been on the decline for 50 consecutive days. Even with
falling prices, Illinois has the most expensive gas in the Midwest, according to
Gas prices can change from shifting supply and demand. In Illinois, gas taxes
are a constant that keep prices higher than its neighbor states’ – 77 cents
higher than Missouri.
Illinois has had the second-highest motor fuel taxes in the nation since Gov.
J.B. Pritzker doubled them to 38 cents per gallon from 19 cents in 2019. Before
Pritzker took office, Illinois’ gas taxes were the 10th highest in the nation.
He also added an automatic, inflationary adjustment so state lawmakers could
duck responsibility for unpopular votes on gas tax hikes. That autiomatic annual
hike now has the state gas tax at 39.2 cents per gallon, but it is expected to
hit 45.2 cents a year from now.
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Since the gas tax doubled, Illinoisans have paid an extra $3.5 billion in taxes
alone, or $277 per person.
Pritzker’s solution to surging inflation and high gas prices is temporary relief
that expires shortly after the election.
Instead of lowering the motor fuel tax, he thinks it’d be better to simply delay
the annual gas tax hike. Because it’s delayed, Illinoisans can expect two gas
tax hikes in 2023.
The same government union leaders who advocated for doubling the gas tax are
pushing for a constitutional amendment on the Nov. 8 ballot. Amendment 1, a tax
hike disguised as a “workers’ rights amendment,” would guarantee a $2,100
property tax hike by giving government union bosses the power to make nearly
unlimited demands that taxpayers would be forced to fund.
Gas taxes and property taxes should not be so high that Illinoisans seek a
better deal across state lines.