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COLUMN: Should we be taxed by mile or gallons of gas?

Tahlequah Daily Press By Randy Gibson Sep 25, 2023

Oklahoma is conducting a study to see if drivers should be taxed by the miles they drive or by the gallons of gas they buy, which is the current method.

This new scheme is gaining popularity as cars, such as electric and hybrid ones, are using less fuel and causing a gap in tax revenue for transportation departments to use in road maintenance, repair, and builds. Three states, Oregon, Utah, and Virginia, already have a form of tax for miles driven. Hawaii is set to join soon, and the federal government is also testing the idea.

Those in favor of the tax by mile promote the fairness, environmental benefits, and technological advancements as the reason this way of taxing drivers is needed. Tax by mile will ensure individuals pay taxes based on their actual usage of the state’s roads. They say those who drive more put more wear on the road, so they will pay more, while those who drive less will pay less. They claim it is fairer compared to the gas tax, which taxes on amount of fuel used and not on actual road usage.

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