Pa drivers will see a big hike in gas prices come January 1st - WFMJ.com News weather sports for Youngstown-Warren Ohio

Pa drivers will see a big hike in gas prices come January 1st

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SHARON, Pa. - Drivers fueling up at Pennsylvania gas stations will feel more pain at the pump.

Drivers in Sharon are not happy they'll have to pay at least 10 cents a gallon more at the pump to fill up their vehicles on January 1st saying everything keeps going up except paychecks.

"Taxes keep going up. We're just paying the state. We're not living anymore," said Sharon resident Angel Delacruz

The tax hike is being fueled by a transportation bill that will pump money into roads and bridges.

However State Representative Mark Longietti says he voted against that bill because it unnecessarily provide one billion dollars for new road projects in central Pennsylvania.

He believes the tax hike is too steep and will hurt small businesses and working folks.

"We're looking at 28 cents a gallon increase on the gas tax over a four year period. Pennsylvania would have the highest gas tax in the country under this measure. I just think that's asking people too much," Longietti said.

The bill also eliminates a set gas tax with a millage. Representative Longietti tells us what that means is when prices spike at the pump, the tax will increase more at a time when people can afford it the least.

He also believes the hike on the wholesale price of gas could hurt small independently owned gas stations like Kloss on East State Street in Sharon.

The owner, Bill Griffith, who still pumps gas for customers, says he has maintenance work to help but fears the tax will send some customers to Ohio to fill up.

Currently the state tax is 32 cents a gallon. Add in 28 cents over four years and the federal tax of 18 cents, and drivers will be paying at least 78 cents in taxes per gallon.

Longietti says the bill he voted to put the brakes on also hikes the tax on diesel fuel by 40 cents a gallon over four years and hikes registration fees for large trucks from about $200 a year to $2,000 a year.

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