Conservative group Americans For Prosperity – South Carolina is sponsoring a rally in opposition to a proposed increase in the state’s 16 cents per gallon fuels tax Tues. at 1:30 pm on the first floor of the Capitol building. A pending Senate bill would raise the fuels tax to 28 cents per gallon over six years. Debate on the bill begins Tues.
Sen. Tom Davis, a Beaufort Republican, is leading the charge against the tax increase. He has successfully filibustered similar measures during the past few years. He cites a recent poll by the Trafalgar Group which shows that only 21% of general election voters support increasing the fuels tax, with another 13% in favor as long as there are offsetting decreases in other state taxes. The approval numbers are even lower for minorities, low-income voters and voters under the age of 65. You can see the polling information here: https://drive.google.com/file/d/0B2Hwy_ovLLLvYnotWjVIMzZKd0U/view
Davis said in a recent newspaper op-ed, “Before any serious discussion can be had about raising South Carolina’s gas tax, serious reform is needed within our state’s Department of Transportation.” He called for the need for statewide prioritization and dissolving the legislative-driven Highway Commissioner system, which pushes for road projects which are popular within the state’s seven Congressional Districts. Davis often mentions a $100 Million widening project along a sparsely-traveled rural road in Florence County.
In addition to Sen. Davis, the speakers roster will include Lt. Gov. Kevin Bryant and Senators Tom Corbin, Shane Martin, Scott Talley and Wes Climer. Other sponsoring groups include Concerned Veterans for America, South Carolina Club For Growth and the Automobile Dealers Association of South Carolina. The event is open to the public.