Illinois drivers brace for new gas tax hike and increased registration fees

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ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Over the weekend, Illinois lawmakers passed a bill aimed at fixing the state’s aging infrastructure plan. 

However, the plan doesn’t come cheap, with a $45 billion price tag. That means taxpayers are being asked to pay up.

Illinois drivers say they’re going to feel the hardest pinch from the new gas tax and registration fee increase more than any other. 

“It’s already expensive and that’s something that you need,” said Tiffany Royster, Rockford resident.

Illinois residents are bracing for new taxes.

Illinois lawmakers voted to double the gas tax starting July 1st. Drivers will pay 38 cents for every gallon they buy.

On top of the gas tax hike, registration fees also went up 50% to $151. Smokers too will be forking over more for cigarettes to $2.98 per pack.

All the new taxes have some Illinois residents asking ‘when does it end?’

“So they’re making it impossible to live,” Royster said. “If they raise up minimum wage, but then they raise everything else up.”

The revenue from the new taxes is supposed to go towards fixing state roads and other infrastructure, but some drivers say the new taxes will keep them off Illinois roads and out of the state as much as possible.

“It makes you not want to commute not want to go further,” said Sabrina Robinson, Rockford resident. “A lot of times when you want to enjoy your family and go out of town, take a road trip, it’s not like it was before. It’s almost cheaper to take a flight or even take like a train”

“We spend 75% of our time in Wisconsin, so most of the time we do fill up there,” Royster said. “If we do need gas here we get it, but we try to do it up there because it’s a lot cheaper”

As for the cigarette tax, some think it isn’t the worst idea and could even benefit smokers.

“At the end of the day there’s a lot of people that enjoy cigarettes, but it’s all and all not good for you, so raising the taxes will hopefully minimize the amount of people that are smoking,” Robinson said.

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