Californians may not see any relief at the pump anytime soon as lawmakers continue to struggle to cut the gasoline tax before it rises this summer.
“It is clear now that the Legislature will not act in time to provide immediate [and] limited relief,” a spokesperson from Gov. Gavin Newsom’s office said.
The looming May 1 deadline to suspend the gas tax increase will not be met. Currently, Californians a pay a 51-cent per gallon gasoline tax that will rise 3 cents July 1.
Newsom and other lawmakers have proposed to offset the 3-cent increase and provide a $400 gas rebate for registered vehicle owners, which Newsom had previously stated could be in the hands of drivers as early as July.
To date, no legislation has been introduced regarding rebates, which Newsom earlier proposed would be provided via debit cards.
Despite failing to meet the May 1 deadline for such legislation, Newsom said he would like to see the rebate proceed.
“People in the state need relief,” he said during an April 26 news conference. “It’s not just gas, it’s inflation, cost of living, which is through the roof.”
Meanwhile, Assemblyman Kevin Kiley (R-Rocklin), whose bill to suspend the gas tax for six months earlier this year failed said the lack of movement by his colleagues shows their lack of empathy for constituents.
“It’s completely outrageous,” he told The Epoch Times. “This is evidence of how out of touch they are with residents.”
However, Kiley’s bill—Assembly Bill 1638—will be heard in the Assembly again, he said.
Failed legislation remains in the Assembly committee in and is eligible for reconsideration.
“This is what the people of California want, so we are going to use every tool we have,” he said.