Niagara County looks to potentially provide additional relief at the gas pump

Posted at 12:51 PM, Apr 12, 2022
and last updated 2022-04-12 12:51:18-04

NIAGARA COUNTY, NY (WKBW) — Niagara County lawmakers are considering providing further relief at the gas pump following the passage of the New York State budget that includesthe suspension of the state gas tax.

According to Niagara County, the state gas tax includes a 16 cent reduction per gallon beginning June 1. It also gives counties the option to cap their sales tax. The current Niagara County sales tax is 4 percent.

Niagara County Legislature Majority Leader Randy Bradt has asked the county manager and budget director to look into different scenarios that could save drivers more money, and the impact they'd have on the county budget.

“It’s important to make sure any gas sales tax reduction does not create a significant budget gap that impacts property taxpayers,” said Bradt. “However, I’m confident, given that sales tax revenue has been increasing since the height of the pandemic even beyond budgeted expectations, that we can adjust our budget as needed.”

The minority leader says he too supports the plan, but has one major concern.

“I want to talk with state leaders about how we can ensure that these reductions are going to translate to lower gas prices,” said Minority Leader Chris Robins. “The full amount of any state and county gas tax reduction needs to be passed along to consumers at the pump.”

Lawmakers will be reviewing their options at a committee meeting April 25. The legislature says it hopes to have a plan in place and ready to go by the time the state gas tax reduction takes effect June 1.