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A new study by the nonpartisan Washington-based Tax Foundation reveals that Illinois has the secondhighest gasoline state taxes and fees in the country, 59.56 cents a gallon, exceeded only by California’s 66.98 cents a gallon.

The foundation’s Janelle Cammenga writes that “California pumps out the highest state gas tax rate of 66.98 cents per gallon, followed by Illinois (59.56 cpg), Pennsylvania (58.7 cpg), and New Jersey (50.7 cpg). The lowest state gas tax rates can be found in Alaska at 14.98 cents per gallon, followed by Missouri (17.42 cpg) and Mississippi (18.79 cpg).”

Gasoline taxes face a narrowing base, as the improvement in vehicles’ fuel economy along with the growth in sales of electric vehicles distorts the tax’s connection to vehicle usage of roads.

“The financial pressures on Illinois taxpayers are sky-high,” said Jim Tobin, economist and president of the Taxpayer Education Foundation. “The scope of the report doesn’t cover the reasons taxes of many kinds are so high in Illinois. Billions of taxpayer dollars are being pumped into the state pension systems for retired government employees. These pension funds are on life-support and depend on transfusions of taxpayer dollars to remain afloat.”

“Illinois taxpayers won’t see any relief from high taxes until an amendment to the State Constitution is passed enabling the reduction of pension benefits for retired government employees and bureaucrats. New government hires should be required to pay for their own retirements with 401(k)-style programs, which allow employees to contribute a portion of their wages to their own individual retirement


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