Will a tax break offset recent price spikes at the pump?
Information submitted by AAA of Western and Central New York
New York’s tax break on gasoline went into effect on Wednesday, June 1. The state is suspending the sales and excise taxes on each gallon of gas, which equates to a total discount of 16 cents per gallon through the end of the year. Many counties across New York have also followed suit and will suspend or cap gas taxes at the county level.
In Erie County, motorists will not be taxed on any gallon of fuel beyond the first $2. Consumers should save an estimated 11 cents per gallon. Niagara County is capping taxes after $3 per gallon, and motorists should save about 5 cents per gallon.
In Central New York, Onondaga County taxes gasoline at 4% sales tax, which comes to 12 cents a gallon for gasoline purchased at $3 a gallon. With a cap in place, the sales tax won’t rise beyond that amount, regardless of how high the price of gas rises. The cap will expire on Nov. 30, unless county lawmakers extend it.
Monroe County will tax gas as if it costs $2 per gallon. Motorists will save 8 cents per gallon if gas costs $4 per gallon, which combined with the state tax cap will save motorists 24 cents a gallon.
As of Tuesday, the national average price for a gallon of gasoline is $4.62. One year ago, the price was $3.05. The New York state average is $4.93. A year ago, the NYS average was $3.08.
AAA Western and Central New York (AAA WCNY) reports the following averages:
√ Batavia – $4.83
√ Buffalo – $4.83
√ Elmira – $4.87
√ Ithaca – $4.87
√ Rochester – $4.89
√ Rome – $4.89
√ Syracuse – $4.86
√ Watertown – $4.90
Oil prices closed Tuesday topping $115 per barrel. If oil prices remain elevated, gas prices will likely do the same. Fears of further global supply constraints caused by a European Union (EU) ban on Russian oil exports are driving up oil prices. And domestic gas demand may again start to climb as drivers fuel up for the three-month-long summer travel season, which began this Memorial Day weekend.
Meanwhile, the national average for diesel fuel is at $5.52. One year ago, the price was $3.19. In New York, the average price for diesel is $6.45. One year ago, the price was $3.23.
To conserve fuel, motorists should map routes, avoid peak traffic times like rush hour, and combine errands into one trip while using cruise control when possible. Drivers should also make sure tire pressure is at the vehicle’s recommended level for the best gas mileage while removing any unnecessary and bulky items from the car, since it takes more fuel to accelerate a heavy vehicle. Get more tips here: https://gasprices.aaa.com/news/fuel-saving-tips/. Motorists can benefit from comparing pump prices before filling up with the AAA mobile app for iPhone, iPad and Android.
AAA members receive discounts at gas stations such as Fastrac, Maple Leaf Market and Shell. Learn more here. AAA members can save on gas by joining the Fuel Rewards at Shell program. Join at AAA.com/Shell. Motorists can also locate gas prices across the country and stay up-to-date on the latest news and fuel-saving tips at http://gasprices.aaa.com.
As upstate New York’s largest member services organization, AAA Western and Central New York provides more than 887,000 members with travel, insurance, financial and automotive-related services. Since its founding in 1900, AAA has been a leading advocate for the safety and security of all travelers. Visit AAA at www.AAA.com.