One Independent and two Republican members of the state Assembly whose districts include parts of Riverside County voted Monday to suspend the gasoline tax to provide some relief at the pump, while all Democrat Assembly members from the county joined their colleagues in voting down the proposal.
Assembly Bill 1638 was proposed by Assemblyman Kevin Kiley, R-El Dorado, in January and sought to establish a six-month suspension of all state taxes “on each gallon of motor vehicle fuel … entered into this state or sold in this state.”
According to the author, the measure would have shaved about 50 cents off each gallon of petrol purchased statewide.
By enacting a suspension, revenue losses for transportation and other projects would have been lost, however, requiring the state controller to transfer money from the General Fund to backfill the deficit.
The average price for a gallon of regular gas in California stands at $5.74, though in some locations, prices are already approaching $7 per gallon, according to the Auto Club.
One month ago, the average price was $4.70, and a year ago, it was $3.83, according to figures.
Assembly members Sabrina Cervantes, D-Corona, Eduardo Garcia, D-Indio, and Jose Medina, D-Riverside, joined 36 members of their party in rejecting AB 1638 during the late-afternoon action.
Assemblyman Chad Mayes, I-Rancho Mirage, Assemblyman Randy Voepel, R-Idyllwild, and Assemblywoman Marie Waldron, R-Temecula, voted in favor. Assemblyman Kelly Seyarto, R-Lake Elsinore, did not cast a vote.
The measure required a two-thirds majority to pass.