The Nevada Capitol
Gov. Steve Sisolak has so far been silent on what he will do if Congress suspends the federal gas tax.
The legal issue is that Nevada has a state law that automatically raises the state gasoline tax if and when the federal government lowers or suspends its gas tax.
That means if Congress agrees with President Joe Biden and suspends the tax for 90 days, Nevada gasoline customers would see no reduction in what they pay at the pump.
The state would, however, see increased revenue primarily to the Highway Fund.
Sisolak’s office was informed about the existence of that law in March in a letter sent to him by state Senate Minority Leader James Settelmeyer, R-Gardnerville. The governor’s office didn’t respond to a request for comment.
Settelmeyer said state law instructs the state to, “backfill any reduction in the federal tax with an equal increase in the state’s excise tax.”
He recommended in that letter that the governor call a one-day special legislative session to remove that language so Nevada drivers benefit from any federal gas tax holiday.
Biden proposed suspending the tax through the busy travel months of the summer to give families a break.
The federal tax accounts for 18-cents of the total per-gallon price of gas. That money goes into the federal Highway Trust Fund to pay for transportation maintenance and projects.