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Leggett Suggests Gas Tax Hike, O'Malley Noncommittal


Gov.-elect Martin O'Malley arrived nearly an hour late to the Committee for Montgomery's annual legislative breakfast this morning, after getting stuck in rush hour traffic from Baltimore.

Shortly before O'Malley arrived at the North Bethesda conference center, Montgomery's new county executive Ike Leggett had suggested a remedy to the state's transportation woes: an unspecified increase in Maryland's 23.5 cent gasoline tax.

O'Malley was quick to emphasize his support for building the $2.4 billion intercounty connector "on time" and for the proposed Purple Line. But he was noncommittal about Leggett's suggestion.

"It's certainly an interesting proposal, and we'll be looking at every reasonable proposal in the months ahead," O'Malley said.

By Ann Marimow  |  December 11, 2006; 2:47 PM ET
Categories:  Governor  
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"It's certainly an interesting proposal, and we'll be looking at every reasonable proposal in the months ahead"


Increasing the gasoline tax is only one of many revenue increasing options open to an unchecked legislature.

Posted by: BG from PG | December 12, 2006 8:52 AM | Report abuse

Let's see, I only have to go out of my way about 10 miles to buy all my gasoline in Virginia...

Go for it, you leftist Dems! Teach them what it means to have you guys running things! LOL!

Posted by: Rufus | December 12, 2006 9:58 AM | Report abuse

"Go for it, you leftist Dems! Teach them what it means to have you guys running things! LOL!"

Go ahead and laugh. Many, including myself, wouldn't mind paying a few cents per gallon as long as the money is spent on badly-needed and long-overdue transportation improvements (personally, I don't want any of it spent on unnecessary rail like the Purple Line and I definitely don't want to see ALL of the money spent on rail).

Sure beats the Virginia alternative - NOTHING getting done, thanks to the anti-tax country-boy yahoos in control of the Legislature.

Strange, how we can never get ANYTHING, unless we elect some "leftist Dems".

Posted by: CEEAF | December 12, 2006 11:21 AM | Report abuse

I would like to see a $1 gallon gas tax levied in the State. It would work wonders to curb sprawl, fund innovative transportation options, and promote responsible development.

Posted by: Concerned Voter | December 12, 2006 12:15 PM | Report abuse

This is merely the first of a series of tax increases which Leggett and the Washington Post will support. Next will be violating the county property tax limit and increasing the energy tax which was supposed to be sunsetted in FY07. As I said in the campaign, a vote for Leggett is a vote to raise your own taxes. The county budget broke $2 billion in FY98 and $3billion in 04. Already, it is set to break $4 billion. Leggett can govern only when revenues are rapidly increasing and the Post editors are happy only when their boots are on the necks of the young and old who want to be able to afford to live in the county. There is no reason why a penny of the existing sales tax can't be dedicated to transportation instead of raising taxes.

Posted by: Robin Ficker | December 12, 2006 12:19 PM | Report abuse

"I don't want any of it spent on unnecessary rail like the Purple Line and I definitely don't want to see ALL of the money spent on rail.

Sure beats the Virginia alternative - NOTHING getting done, thanks to the anti-tax country-boy yahoos in control of the Legislature."

You make no sense CEEAF. Have you been to I-66 or I-95 in Virginia? What do you want, 12 lanes in each direction? They already have six. Sprawl on the highways is a problem that a 1 or 2 or 99 cents tax increase won't fix. But proposals like the Purple line are a step in the right direction.

My guess is that O'Malley and freinds will raise the fuel tax inter alia and little or none of it will go to additional transportation projects that weren't already on the chalk board during Ehrlich's tenure.

Posted by: BG from PG | December 12, 2006 12:49 PM | Report abuse

at the begining of the summer and gas was $3 per gallon, wasn't MOM blaming Ehrlich for not SUSPENDING Maryland's highest in the region gas tax and saying he would fight for LOWER gas prices? I expect the "working people" he endlessly talked about are dying for higher gas taxes.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 12:52 PM | Report abuse

geez, these guys haven't even been sworn in yet and they are looking for taxes to raise.

Posted by: uugghhh | December 12, 2006 12:55 PM | Report abuse

O'Malley should have been honest with voters if he intends to raise taxes. He dodged the issue during the campaign but now he doesn't have to.

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 1:10 PM | Report abuse

Word on the street among national Dems is that O'Malley was badly and permanently damaged by his long, bitter battle with Ehrlich. Most don't like the fact that O'Malley wasn't a strong enough candidate to take the high road but had to resort to petty, infantile attacks to win. O'Malley's only way to restore himself is to run left now, which he will do, all too predictably. His mediocre record as Mayor will only be underwhlemed by his even more mediocre record as Governor. At least in Maryland, the Governor is relatively insignificant, which is why most ex-Maryland Governors end up teaching Political Science or serving as a goon at some lobbying shop. No doubt, a similar fate will befall O'Malley when he's done....

Posted by: Anonymous | December 12, 2006 7:28 PM | Report abuse

I don't get what commercials you guys were watching I remember sitting and watching the commercials during the Skins-Cowboys game the sunday before the election and thinking, dang O'malleys commercials were way to positive, which ones didn't you like the one with him with the little kids or the one with Mikulski?

I actually started to worry he might lose because they were so positive.

And also don't they teach you all math anymore at those fancy republican prep schools anymore, at a gas price of 2.50 cents driving an extra 10 miles to get gas is going to cost you 2.50 in a car that gets 20 miles to the gallon , and most SUVs are down around 10 or so, so thats 5 dollars per 10 mile ride, that means to re-coop a 10 cent a gallon gas tax your going to have to buy 50 gallons of gas, so you better go and buy some gas cans and such to carry around with you on your ride to Virginia. :)

Posted by: DCDave | December 12, 2006 9:25 PM | Report abuse

Don't say nuthin'...just grab yur ankles. Got some new fees I wanna share with y'all...yeeeeeeehaaaaaa!!!!!! Good luck you gonna git some.

Posted by: country boy | December 12, 2006 9:30 PM | Report abuse

Wow, and here I thought the property values here in DC and Maryland had gotten so high that we had gotten rid of them all. Sombody better alert the Governor, we missed one. :)

Posted by: DCDave | December 12, 2006 9:48 PM | Report abuse

Or maybe this one: Sombody better come and pick it up it must have gotten out of its cage somehow, and somebody taught it how to type apparently, I don't know how we are going to be able to explain this down at the lab....

Posted by: DCDave | December 12, 2006 9:51 PM | Report abuse

Sorry just one more, too much caffeine:

They didn't manage to teach it how to add though....When they start doing that they will be a danger to us all...

Posted by: DCDave | December 12, 2006 9:53 PM | Report abuse

Read the article again people, it was Leggett, NOT O'MALLEY, that suggested raising the gas tax. O'Malley simply responded politely and appropriately.

Posted by: Saoirse | December 12, 2006 10:55 PM | Report abuse

DCDave, yur one funny feller. Now, I don't have one of them fancy edukations like you sophisticated types there in...DC and know with all of them there fine universities..but I know a little arithmertick. Here's one fer ya: add all those big jumps in yer property values there in...DC and Maryland...and apply those low tax much more you paying sport? Now ask yurself what yur gittin' for those additional contributions you been makin'. got lower crime? less traffic? fewer illegals? better schools? Yep, I don't know a whole lot about arithmertick, but I do know when someone pees on my head and tells me it's raining, it's best not to stand there like some dolt who just fell off the turnip truck. Might be time to ask some questions.

Posted by: country boy | December 12, 2006 10:56 PM | Report abuse

Well I guess we agree then lil parner, things are pretty good here in good old Marland, thanks for reminding us all.

The best thing about Marland, we can afford the extra taxes to help folks out. Whats our per capita right now people 5th, 6th what we crack the top 5% yet.

You know at one point somebody gotta figure why dem blue states is all have those high percapitas incomes, and the reds low taxes and all just don't measure up? Couldn't be cus of all dem fancy College co it?

Posted by: DCDave | December 13, 2006 12:52 AM | Report abuse

DCDave, like most liberals, you just don't understand how things work in the real world. Driving the extra 10 miles to buy gas in VA isn't to save me money, it's to deny the tax revenues to stupid MD liberals.

And what's this I hear about you putting people in cages? Got a Final Solution in mind for people who think differently that you?

Posted by: Rufus | December 13, 2006 9:33 AM | Report abuse

Cages, people in Cages, that wasn't the basis of that joke, re-read it carefully and you will get it.

If you want to drive 10 miles to deny anybody anywhere, anything be my guest. Its a free country.

You know what I propose a prisoner exchange, Maryland give up it Republicans in return for getting their Democrats back from Virginia.

Posted by: DCDave | December 13, 2006 3:23 PM | Report abuse

O'Malley will not raise the gas tax. It would be political suicide and he knows it. He is too politically shrewd for that. And BG, you are definitely not from PG. Rufus, you should move to Alabama.

Posted by: BG and Rufus are Losers | December 15, 2006 8:55 AM | Report abuse

Bad news DCDave, that would leave me still in Maryland. Check the numbers on the percentages of people in MD who are Democrats vs. Republicans and then check how O'Malley's vote went.

Yep, there are a lot of Democrats in MD who know our party is on the wrong course.

Posted by: Rufus | December 15, 2006 9:58 AM | Report abuse

Or who should just switch parties, :)

Posted by: DCDave | December 18, 2006 8:57 PM | Report abuse

I'm shocked, shocked to find that the Dems are going to raise taxes here!

Posted by: Carlos Silva | December 22, 2006 10:15 AM | Report abuse

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