A serious effort is underway by some Florida lawmakers to eliminate the current state tax on fuel (also known as a the gas tax) and instead tax drivers based on how many miles they drive. The theory is that the more miles you drive, the more roads and infrastructure you use and therefore you should pay more.
The lawmakers hope to use GPS tracking devices installed in all vehicles to keep track of how miles you drive, then tax you accordingly. This has some Florida drivers angry that the new system will end up costing some of them more than others. Of course, that’s the idea: to charge based on usage, not a flat tax for everyone including those who don’t drive very much at all.
Florida is among a handful of states pushing to tax drivers for how many miles they travel rather than how much gas they buy.
Florida drivers pay no more than 59 cents fuel tax per gallon at this time, but as fuel efficient cars gain popularity, that gas tax collected is falling short of the amount needed for road repair. The main option Florida and other states, like Oregon and Minnesota, have focused on is a GPS technology that would track and charge you for how many miles you drive. Your fee would then be divided up between the state, county and local transportation departments, based on which roads you use.
To improve congestion, the Florida Transportation Commission has also discussed placing a higher tax on roads more traveled during peak hours.
Since so many drivers travel between states, the transportation commissioner says this mileage based user fee needs to be a nationwide effort. Florida is among the states trying to get the rest on board.