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House votes to suspend gas tax temporarily

Capitol Beat News Service

ATLANTA – The General Assembly came one step closer Friday to temporarily suspending Georgia’s sales tax on gasoline and other motor fuels to reduce pump prices that have soared in recent weeks.

The state House of Representatives voted unanimously to suspend collection of the tax through May 31.

Gasoline prices have skyrocketed since the Russian invasion of Ukraine more than two weeks ago and the subsequent ban on U.S. imports of Russian oil President Joe Biden imposed earlier this week.

The average price of a gallon of gas in Georgia stood at $4.29 on Friday, highest in the state’s history, said Rep. Jodi Lott, R-Evans, one of Gov. Brian Kemp’s floor leaders in the House.

The state has suspended the gasoline tax in the past when fuel supplies were disrupted. While the governor is legally permitted to suspend the tax by executive order when the General Assembly is not in session, this suspension must go through the legislature.

The bill will head next to the state Senate, which likely will pass it during the next legislative day on Tuesday. The suspension would take effect as soon as Kemp signs the bill.