WEST SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – The sticker shock at the gas pump never gets old.
“Well, they are quite shocking when you get to the pump and realize how much you’re going to spend to fill up,” said Peter Zahut at a Shell gas station near Reed Avenue and Ikea Court.READ MORE: Stagg High Stabbing Suspect Anthony Gray Ordered To Undergo Mental Evaluation
Brianna Briambla says $5 is a lot of money.
“I pump $60 of gas and it doesn’t even fill it up,” she said.
When we met her, she was leaving for her job in Roseville.
Whatever grade you’re buying, you’re feeling the burning hole in your wallet. AAA reports Thursday’s national average for gas is $3.30. In California, it’s close to $4.66 – about $1.35 more than what the rest of the country pays.
“Feels like price-fixing. Feels like something’s going on that shouldn’t be,” Dayan Carlsen said as he pumped gas.
Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, representing the sixth district, says he hears similar sentiments from constituents.
“People are fed up,” Kiley said. “They think it’s completely unacceptable.”READ MORE: Boosted Californians Getting COVID At Twice The Rate Of Those Vaccinated But Not Boosted
He recently introduced Assembly Bill 1638, which aims to suspend the gas tax immediately for six months in hopes of bringing relief to taxpayers.
But Governor Gavin Newsom only wants to halt the next scheduled increase of the gas tax, which means it’ll still be more than $0.50. He’s claiming the state can afford the halt because of a surplus.
So, what does this mean for Californians?
CBS13 is getting answers from tax expert Severin Borenstein of UC Berkeley. He cautions these proposals would only mean modest savings for you.
“It would put money back into the pockets of consumers, but it would take it out of the funds that get that money,” Borenstein said.
He’s referring to how the gas tax revenue is used for the aging infrastructure we use every day. The governor said the budget surplus would cover the loss of tax revenue.
Even if the gas tax is halted or eliminated for a period, Borenstein says there’s still inflation.MORE NEWS: Applications Now Open For $10K Grants For Sacramento Artists
To hear Borenstein’s explanation of why California gas prices remain high, click here.