Raising taxes on already-high gas prices is politically unpopular, but what many don’t take into account is how poorly-maintained roads can cost them even more in repairs.
Melissa Lafsky, editor in chief of the transportation blog, The Infrastructurist, told FOX Business she believes that gas taxes should be raised for just that reason.
Many roads in America are inadequately maintained. Pennsylvania, for example, contains some of the poorest roads in the country, recently receiving a D- on its road condition grade from the American Society of Civil Engineers.
According to Lafsky, the average American spends $335 annually repairing cars due to driving on un-repaired roads. Those who reside in urban areas annually pay more--approximately $800, as roads are often worse in these areas. In order to repair these roads, Lafsky believes that the gas tax should be raised by ten or fifteen cents.
Since 1993, the federal gas tax has been at 18.4 cents per gallon. Revenue from the gas tax supports the Highway Trust Fund, which is used to repair the Interstate Highway system.
If the gas tax is raised, then the average American will spend significantly less on the adjusted gas tax than he or she would spend on repairing a car, according to Lafsky.
However, one issue with Lafsky’s idea is that politicians on both sides of the political spectrum are opposed to raising the gas tax, calling it "political suicide." She says the best way to introduce the issue to American citizens is by making Americans recognize that they are the ones who have to deal with repairing their cars. The burden of having to spend hundreds of dollars on repairing his or her car can be lifted if we support a rise in the gas tax.