WASHINGTON — With Americans suffering from pain at the pump from record-high gas prices, ideas to ease the cost burden are being floated to lawmakers at the federal level.
Los Angeles became the first big city in the United States to achieve a gas price of $6 or more on Tuesday. According to GasBuddy, the national average gas price in the United States is starting to fall after reaching a high of $4.35 per gallon on March 10.
One proposal includes a stimulus check and others would tax oil companies.
Reps. Mike Thompson of California, John Larson of Connecticut, and Lauren Underwood of Illinois have proposed a bill.
The Gas Reimbursement Act of 2022 proposes that Americans receive a $100 energy rebate per month (plus $100 for each dependent) for the rest of 2022 in any month where national average gas prices exceed $4.00 per gallon.
"Americans are feeling the impact at the pump of Vladimir Putin’s illegal invasion of Ukraine, and right now we must work together on commonsense policy solutions to ease the financial burden that my constituents are feeling," Thompson said in a news release. "The Putin Price Hike is putting strain on our economy, and I am proud to be working with Reps. Larson and Underwood to introduce this legislation to provide middle-class Americans with monthly payments to ease the financial burden of this global crises."
The rebate would be distributed in the same way that the most recent Economic Impact Payments (EIPs) were sent out, with single filers earning less than $75,000 receiving $100.
Rep. Peter DeFazio of Oregon has proposed the Stop Gas Price Gouging Tax and Rebate Act, which would "create a windfall profit tax on excessive corporate profits and return the revenue to American consumers in the form of a tax rebate."
Companies will pay a one-time, 50 percent windfall profit tax in 2022 if their adjusted taxable income (ATI) exceeds 110 percent of their average ATI between 2015 and 2019, according to his plan. DeFazio said, the windfall profit tax revenue will be returned to consumers in the form of a monthly, advanced, and refundable tax credit that will be phased out as income rises.
He said requirements would be the same as those of the stimulus checks given during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Democratic state lawmakers in California proposed a $400 gas rebate for every taxpayer that would be funded with $9 billion from the state's budget surplus.