New Legislation Offers Relief at the Pump
WASHINGTON — Congresswoman Yvette Herrell (R-N.M.) this week introduced legislation to provide relief from skyrocketing gas prices. The Pausing Unrelenting Markups on Petroleum (PUMP) Act of 2021 would temporarily suspend collection of the 18.4 cent federal gas tax.
"Inflation is rising and American pocketbooks are stretched," said Herrell. "Gas prices in particular are at their highest national average since 2014. The PUMP Act would immediately reduce gas prices and allow consumers to spend money in other ways, which will help our economic recovery get back on track."
In April 2021, the Consumer Price Index saw its sharpest increase since September 2008. The price of staple goods rose by 4.2 percent, and monthly core inflation was the largest since 1981. Energy prices jumped 25 percent from the same month a year ago, and the cost of gasoline specifically increased 49.6 percent.
The PUMP Act would suspend the 18.4¢ federal excise tax on gasoline until all emergency health orders related to the COVID-19 pandemic are lifted or for 6 months after the date of enactment of the bill, whichever is longer.
"Excessive federal unemployment benefits and cumbersome COVID restrictions still in place around the country are slowing our economic recovery," Herrell added. "The additional unnecessary burden on middle-class consumers caused by skyrocketing gas prices will have ripple effects across other areas of the economy, as individuals and families will have less money to spend elsewhere."