N.C. gas-tax cap disappears July 1

Posted June 29, 2009 6:50 p.m. EDT
Updated June 29, 2009 7:36 p.m. EDT

— Beginning July 1, the cap on North Carolina's gasoline tax will become the tax base, and there will be no limit to how high it can go.

The tax was set to drop Wednesday from 29.9 cents per gallon to 27.8 cents, but legislation signed into law earlier this month now sets the minimum for the next two years at 29.9 cents.

The Department of Transportation said that because of it, the state lost $400 million in potential revenue over the past six months that could have been used to fix roads.

Keeping the tax at 29.9 cents will generate an estimated $50 million from July 1 to December 31, the DOT predicts.

The gas tax, which is tied to the wholesale price of fuel, is set every six months. The next time it can be increased is December.

North Carolina drivers are paying an average of $1.35 per gallon less than this time last year. Without a cap, a gallon would have been more than 10 cents higher.