State to test taxing drivers per mile
November 14, 2016
DENVER — Volunteer drivers will be taxed by the mile instead of for each gallon of gas during a four-month pilot program starting in December.
The transportation department's program will involve 100 recruits who will theoretically pay 1.2 cents for each mile they drive, the Denver Post reported.
"It would be similar to electricity and water — you pay for what you use," department spokeswoman Amy Ford said. "This is about fairness."
Ford said the 22 cents per gallon of gas that people are taxed now does not keep pace with inflation or construction costs.
The model could replace the state's gas tax.
Some concerns related to the program include privacy, accountability and fairness for drivers of fuel efficient vehicles who would pay less for a gas tax than they would per mile.
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"That level of fairness about how we're using the road is going away," Ford said, noting that all vehicles will have stricter fuel efficiency standards over time.
"We're looking a little bit at the longer term picture of that."
California and Oregon are testing similar transportation tax models.
Oregon Department of Transportation spokesman Tom Fuller said his state's pilot program has gone well so far. Non-GPS devices eliminated most privacy concerns.
"It was actually designed so that government doesn't know the location of the vehicle," Fuller said.