Michigan Senate passes bill to suspend state gas tax

Gas prices
Posted at 12:28 PM, Mar 15, 2022
and last updated 2022-03-15 17:19:31-04

(WXYZ) — The Michigan Senate voted to approve a bill that would suspend Michigan's gas tax for six months, following the State House approval last week.

The bill was approved with a 24-14 vote. Last week, the Republican-led State House voted 63-39 to suspend the tax for six months.

It will now go back to the House for formal approval before it goes to Gov. Gretchen Whitmer, who is expected to veto the bill.

Instead, she's calling on Congress to suspend the 18.4-cents-a-gallon federal gas tax and the 24.4-cent diesel tax.

Last week, Republicans in both chambers of the legislature brought up the bill to suspend the 27-cent-per-gallon gas tax, with prices reaching record highs.

Before the vote, Senate Democrats tried to get several amendments to the bill, which were voted down by Republicans.

Several Democratic senators spoke ahead of the vote, saying the money from the gas tax will halt construction projects in the state, and also suggested a state sales tax holiday.

The governor's office released a statement to 7 Action News:

“Governor Whitmer is ready to take action to immediately lower costs and put more money back in people’s pockets. Unfortunately, the bill that passed the legislature wouldn’t even reduce the price of gas until next year at the earliest. Michiganders can’t wait until next year. They need relief now. That’s why Governor Whitmer worked to secure $400 refund checks for drivers, which are hitting mailboxes and bank accounts months ahead of time. Governor Whitmer is ready to bring together Republicans and Democrats to negotiate a bill that saves Michiganders money, just as she has done for the past 780 bipartisan bills.”

- Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer's office