The state of Georgia’s fuel tax holiday has been renewed for at least another month.
Gov. Brian Kemp acted Friday to extend the state’s tax holiday through Dec. 11. The tax break for gas and diesel purchases had been set to run through Nov. 11.
The state normally collects a 29.1-cent gas tax and a 32.6-cent diesel tax.
Seventh round of relief
The latest extension via executive order marks the seventh time the governor has acted to suspend fuel tax collections.
In March, state lawmakers approved a bill and Kemp signed into law a suspension of state fuel taxes through May 31.
The governor said at the time the state is in a good position to provide a tax break because of a $3.7 billion budget surplus through fiscal year 2021.
Kemp later acted to extend the price break through mid-July. He has since signed off on six monthly extensions.
The governor’s office reports that Georgians have saved about $950 million at the pump since the state fuel tax was suspended in March.
In addition to the executive order to suspend state fuel tax collection and to suspend collection of the state sales tax on locomotive fuel, a second executive order extends the supply chain state of emergency through Dec. 11.
The governor said high inflation and OPEC’s recently announced decision to decrease oil production will continue high fuel prices.
“As another holiday season and a looming diesel shortage approaches, Georgians are still facing record high inflation, growing costs at the grocery store just before Thanksgiving, and high prices at the pump as they prepare to travel to see family,” Kemp said in a news release.
The governor is required to issue an executive order to make changes because the Legislature has adjourned for the year.
Georgia fuel prices remain below national average
Kemp said the state of Georgia’s fiscally conservative approach to budgeting allows them to extend the state fuel tax suspension.
Georgia’s average diesel price is about 39 cents below the national average for a gallon of on-highway diesel fuel, according to AAA. The state’s average gas price is about 66 cents below the national average for a gallon of regular gas. LL
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