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Government & Politics

Senate Republicans May Further Reduce Gas Tax Increase

photo of gas pump
A gas pump and prices, which could increase if Ohio legislators vote to raise the gas tax.

The Ohio Senate is preparing to roll out its revised version of the transportation budget, which right now includes a gas tax hike of just under 11 cents. Republican leaders have hinted at some possible changes that could lead to debate among the Senate, House, and governor’s office. 

Gov. Mike DeWine said an 18-cent gas tax increase will help Ohio keep up with major infrastructure costs. The House brought it down to a 10.7-cent increase over a two-year span.

But Republican Senate President Larry Obhof (R-Medina) has said he’s not convinced yet that Ohio faces a dire construction budget shortfall.

And Republican strategists have suggested the Senate might cut the gas tax increase again.

Meanwhile, there’s also a sense that the Senate might try to cut down the $100 million set aside for public transit that was added in by the House.

A substitute bill is expected in committee with a full Senate vote possibly later this week, because the transportation budget has to be signed by March 31.