The simmering debate over a gas tax increase has blown wide open again at the Minnesota Legislature after a measure popped up in House Democrats’ transportation budget bill to index the gasoline tax to construction costs.   Waseca Republican John Petersburg warns:

“It increases the cost for the individual just driving back and forth to (take) their kids to school, etcetera, or even to the store.”

And Petersburg says the increased cost for businesses to transport products and materials will be passed on to consumers.   But Minneapolis Democrat Frank Hornstein contends revenue from a gas tax increase will help jump-start Minnesota’s economy:

“Investments in infrastructure, particularly roads, bridges and public transit, are some our best bang-for-our-public dollar in terms of return on investment.”

Senate Republicans propose using more of the current sales tax on auto parts to fund transportation projects. They say, no tax increases while Minnesota’s economy is still recovering from COVID.