A new proposal to pay for fixing Illinois’ roads could use devices to track how far Illinois drivers have traveled and tax them by the mile.
The plan from Senate President John Cullerton, a Chicago Democrat, is aimed at gasoline tax revenues that have fallen as drivers have bought more fuel-efficient cars…
Drivers, under the plan, could pick whether a device in their cars monitors their miles one of two different ways. Or they could choose to pay the 1.5-cent-per-mile tax on a base 30,000 miles traveled per year, if they have privacy concerns.
One device would track where specifically drivers go and not charge them when they travel out of state or on Illinois toll roads. The other would simply monitor the odometer reading, not tracking the rest of the information.
Illinois drivers would get a refund for gasoline tax costs paid at the pump, Cullerton said. Out-of-state drivers not registered here would pay those taxes as usual.
The article suggests this could come to a vote in a few days but I suspect it will take some time as there are a number of important details to work out. This has been considered elsewhere (see earlier posts here and here involving Oregon) but this seems like a quick move in Illinois. Gas tax revenue has dropped in Illinois in recent years.
These important details might go beyond the technical details and involve trust in politicians. Do Illinois residents trust their own government to (1) track the data properly and (2) refund gas taxes paid at the pump?