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Families, commuters will benefit from summer gas tax holiday

I read your May 8 editorial "Say 'No' to the Padavan Plan." I agree America must do more to control its fossil fuels addiction. That is why I have worked in the state Senate to advance legislative initiatives to provide various tax credits and incentives to foster the research, development and availability of renewable and alternative energy sources in New York.

Our national economic future hinges on a long-term and sustainable energy plan. We are focused on making progress in New York, but real change lies in the leaders in Washington. The benefits of a national, long-term energy policy focused on alternative fuels and renewable resources will be far-reaching. Doing so will allow us to reduce our reliance on foreign oil and bring lower gas prices while protecting our environment.

I disagree, however, with your rejecting the summer gas tax holiday. With the price for a gallon of gas over $4, action must be taken to provide relief to families, commuters and small businesses. There is public support for this measure in Queens and throughout the state. Many New Yorkers have signed on supporting the summer gas tax holiday. New Yorkers need action and relief when it comes to soaring prices at the pump.

There are two points to remember about the legislation passed in the state Senate. First, it will not jeopardize the resources necessary to support the state's Dedicated Highway and Bridge Trust Fund. Second, it empowers the state Taxation and Finance Department and the state Consumer Protection Board to ensure that the savings achieved through suspending gas taxes during the summer travel season are passed on to consumers, not oil companies and retailers.

By suspending the state gas taxes now, we could put money back into families', commuters' and small businesses' pockets. Lower gas prices will help reduce the costs for life's necessities that have increased along with gas prices. This legislation's economic value will allow New Yorkers to take vacations and invest in the state and local economies.

Frank Padavan

State Senator


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