Lawmakers in Olympia continue to discuss the idea of low carbon legislation. One of those proposals in the House looks at increasing the state gasoline tax by 57 cents a gallon, while increasing the tax on diesel sold in Washington by 63 cents per gallon. Moses Lake Representative Tom Dent is very critical of the idea of low carbon legislation. He said these proposals will hurt the state’s farming industry, so it’s important that Ag country push back against the idea.
“As a producer myself, you’re going to saddle me with, for my tractor 63 cents a gallon more for fuel, and I have to figure this out. Right now, some of our commodity prices are pretty low, the price of cows is low, calves is low, the price of hay is way down there. And you know, farmers and ranchers, we’re price takers, we’re not price setters, so we take the price that we get.”
Dent noted it won’t just have a negative impact on farmers, but all rural Washingtonians. He said his District, the 13th, is one of the largest in the state, so no mater where you need to go, you’ll be behind the wheel.
“It’s a long way to services, it’s a long way to town, it’s a long way to the grocery store, it’s a long way to the gas station, so all of those things come into effect. And they’re going to increase that on us?”
Dent said farmers are passionate about what they do, and want to continue to produce the finest and safest foods out there. But he noted proposals such as this will make it more and more difficult to farm in Washington.
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