Gas Tax and Ballot Measures

Rob Zako sends word that a new ballot measure being proposed for the 2008 election would dedicate 1% of gas tax revenues to the State Police and County patrols.

Today the state gas tax is dedicated (by constitutional amendment) to exclusive use on roads. There seem to be several schools of thought around this kind of issue:

– Taxes like this are a user fee and should not be diverted to other uses.

– Taxes are a policy tool and what you tax and what you spend on don’t need to be tightly linked.

This measure of course is redefining the scope of the user fee approach to include patrolling roads in the definition.

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