Congressional Budget Office
[Green Car Congress] In a new report, the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) finds that the fuel economy standards proposed for model years 2017 through 2025 would eventually reduce revenues from the gasoline tax by 21% in 2040. The 21% reduction in revenues would lower receipts credited to the Highway Trust Fund—the mechanism used to finance the federal government’s surface transportation programs.
CBO estimates that such a decrease would result in a $57-billion drop in revenues credited to the Highway Trust Fund from 2012 through 2022—a 13% reduction in the fund’s total receipts from all sources. The full 21% reduction in gasoline tax revenues, however, would not occur for about 30 years.
According to the CBO, policymakers could avoid adding to the shortfall by:
- Reducing spending on highways and mass transit;
- Transferring additional money from the Treasury’s general fund to the Highway Trust Fund; and
- Increasing the gasoline tax or raising revenues from other sources to provide receipts to the trust fund.