(WTNH) — Senate leaders for both Connecticut parties are rejoicing following an announcement that the state will no longer be funding a mileage tax study.
Connecticut’s Department of Transportation Commissioner James Redeker sent a letter last week to the I-95 Corridor Coalition, explaining how the state agency is facing large budget cuts that prevent it from providing about $300,000 in state matching funds to help pay for the study.
I-95 Corridor Coalition was overseeing the multi-state study.
“I am glad to see Connecticut finally withdraw from the program and Democrats joining the Republicans in claiming the victory. The voices of the people of Connecticut were heard load and clear. All those individuals who signed petitions and spoke out in protest made a big difference. A mileage tax is a burden taxpayers cannot afford,” said Senate Republican President Pro Tempore Len Fasano.
Democrat and Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff shared similar sentiments about the mileage tax study.
“I am pleased that the DOT has finally pulled the plug on the mileage tax study. It was clear from the outset that the Senate Democrats opposed the mileage tax study. I am glad that the DOT is seeking to re-prioritize these funds in order to address critical projects,” said Duff.
Last week, Redeker informed eight other Northeastern states participating in the federal study that the state is pulling out.
“I continue to believe this collaborative effort is a great opportunity to learn and gather critical information about a potential future revenue source,” Redeker said in a letter to I-95 Coalition. “Unfortunately, the DOT is now facing budget cuts that prevent us from providing any state matching funds.”
A mileage tax is essentially a user fee that’s based on how much someone drives.
The coalition includes transportation agencies, toll authorities and other groups from Maine to Florida that focus on transportation issues of common interest.