AUGUSTA, ME – Over three weeks ago, former Governor Paul LePage called on Gov. Janet Mills and the Maine Legislature to provide immediate relief to Mainers at the gas pumps by temporarily lowering Maine Motor Fuel ‘Gas Tax’ over the next 90 days. Additionally, Governor LePage called on the Maine Turnpike Authority to also temporarily lower all tolls.
Recently, Rep. Laurel Libby (R-Auburn) submitted an emergency bill entitled, “An Act to Suspend Maine’s Gas Tax.” The bill would suspend the 30 cent per gallon tax on gasoline for the remainder of 2022. Unfortunately, Senate President Jackson and Speaker Fecteau declined to even allow consideration of Rep. Libby’s bill as emergency legislation. It is a sign that the Governor and her party are ignoring the suffering of the Maine people.
“The cost of fuel has increased dramatically in Maine during the past year with no end in sight. As I travel the state, Mainers are expressing deep concern about their financial future and shock at the inflationary prices at the pumps,” said Gov. LePage.
According to AAA, the current average gas price in Maine is $4.20, up from $2.72 a year ago (a 55% increase).Because of Maine’s rural location, we are required to transport most of our food by truck to stock our stores and feed our families. The longer distances require more fuel costs and higher tolls than other states. The Federal USDA consumer price index recently indicated that the inflation rate for the cost of food in Maine is 13% higher than the national average, which is already 8% of above last year.
“The political machinations at the State House are uncalled for during this time of economic uncertainty,” said Gov. LePage. “I call on Governor Mills, Senate President Jackson and Speaker Fecteau to put aside partisan politics and step up and help Mainers who are suffering from these devastating prices at the pumps.”
“Any delay in financial relief is playing politics with the finances and anxiety of Mainers who must make everyday decisions on how to put food on the table,” added Gov. LePage.
“Janet Mills cannot claim to have dollars to spend and then also claim there is no ability to provide immediate relief at the gas pump. It is time to get this done,” said Gov. LePage.
# # #