Bob Corker eyes 12 cent gas tax to help shore up federal road funds

photo Bob Corker

NASHVILLE - U.S. Sen. Bob Corker, R-Tenn., on Thursday proposed a bipartisan plan to raise federal gas and diesel taxes for the first time in more than two decades as an answer to long-standing funding woes threatening to stall the nation's highway, bridge and transit programs.

With the federal Highway Trust Fund expected to run out of money in August, Corker said he is joining with U.S. Sen. Chris Murphy, D-Conn., on a proposal he hopes will provide a permanent, stable solution.

It would raise the current 18.4 cent-per-gallon gas tax and 24.4 cent-per-gallon tax on diesel by 12 cents over the next two years. A 6-cent increase would come next year and a like boost the following year.