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Gas Tax Revenue Could Help Fiscal Crisis

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There may be an upside to the state´s higher gasoline prices. The recent surge in prices at the gas pump may provide hundreds of millions of additional tax dollars to help balance the state budget.

That´s because the jump in gas prices means more gasoline sales tax revenues. Some lawmakers say up to $180 million to $240 million more. The Legislature would need a two-thirds vote to use the extra money on anything other than mass transit.

But some politicians believe they can get that vote and arrange a loan of the revenues to the state´s general fund. That would help combat a projected $35 billion budget shortfall for the fiscal year that begins July 1st.