3¢ Per Gallon Municipal Gas Tax Bill Could Help Illinois Towns Struggling to Rebuild

March 18, 2019

By David Ormsby, Daily Southtown. View the original article here.

Berwyn, IL - Legislation under consideration in Springfield that would allow municipalities to impose their own local, 3¢ per gallon gas tax is being welcomed as a tool for struggling communities to rebuilding their local economies.

The legislation, House Bill 102, would require municipalities to register a responsible bidder ordinance with the Illinois Department of Transportation to allow them to impose a local motor fuel tax of up to 3¢ per gallon, a tax which would be administered and enforced by the Illinois Department of Revenue.

"With towns, villages, and cities throughout Illinois struggling to pay police and fire pension costs while straining to preserve core services, local leaders need additional revenue to fund community capital construction projects," said long-time local municipal attorney Michael Del Galdo, managing partner of the Berwyn-based Del Galdo Law Group, LLC., who serves as general counsel for multiple suburban Cook County communities.

"Moreover, a 3¢ per gallon municipal motor fuel tax would give communities the local control necessary to design their own unique infrastructure spending plans that respond to local capital needs and priorities demanded by their constituents," Del Galdo added.

The legislation's responsible bidder ordinance component also ensures that a trained, reliable local labor pool would be tapped for community construction projects, according to advocates.

"By including a responsible bidder provision in the bill, municipalities will be assured that a qualified workforce will be employed on behalf of projects supported by a local gas tax," said Marc Poulos, Executive Director, Indiana, Illinois, Iowa Foundation for Fair Contracting. "More broadly, this bill will help local communities rebuild their finances and revive their local workforce after the damage inflicted on their budgets and economies due to the Rauner Administration's historic mismanagement."

The measure is slated for a hearing in the House Revenue Committee on March 21.