Rhode Island Fuel User Charges Set to Notch Higher From Inflation Adjustment

AASHTO Journal, 15 May 2015

Under a 2014 Rhode Island law that requires user charges on motor vehicle fuels to be adjusted for inflation, buyers of gasoline, diesel and other fuels will see the excise fee rise to 33 cents a gallon on July 1 from 32 cents now.

The state Division of Taxation, which announced the change May 5, said future inflation adjustments under that law will take effect every two years. So the next time it could increase would be in July 2017.

Rhode Island Public Radio said the one-cent increase would generate $4.2 million in new revenue for the budget year that starts in July.

Indexing fuel charges to inflation was one of several provisions the General Assembly approved last year to bolster transportation spending, as it passed a 2014-15 budget measure.

The Division of Taxation said the actual inflation calculation based on the U.S. consumer price index would set the excise fee at 32.52 cents a gallon, but the statute requires it to be adjusted to the nearest penny.

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