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Infrastructure plan does not include a per-mile driving tax

A viral photo of a graphic aired by the conservative website and cable network Newsmax falsely states that the infrastructure bill supported by President Joe Biden includes a per-mile driving tax as a hidden cost. But that’s not true: The bill includes a provision that creates a volunteer pilot program to study the viability of a per-mile tax. Let’s take a look at the facts.

A Facebook post that includes a photo of a graphic from a Newsmax broadcast that says, “BIDEN TAX INCREASES, DRIVING TAX” and contains three bullets outlining a “per-mile user fee” that is “estimated to be 8 cents per mile” but varies “depending on vehicles.” The person who posted the photo to Facebook wrote in the post: “This will be in addition to the already in place fuel tax. 12,000 miles X $.08 = $960, 15,000 miles X $.08 = $1,200.” The News Literacy Project added a label that says “FALSE.”
The $1 trillion infrastructure bill before Congress does not include a per-mile driving tax.
It proposes a volunteeer pilot program to evaluate the viability of a per-mile driving tax — a possible replacement for the current gasoline tax.
This is not a new idea.
States have also been piloting similar programs to replace gas taxes to adjust for the growing number of electric vehicles.

NewsLit takeaway

Photos of text and graphics generally make it difficult to verify claims and should always be approached with skepticism. In this case, the photo shows one on-air graphic from a Newsmax broadcast but provides no link to the full segment or, more importantly, to the legislation itself. It is not clear what the openly partisan Newsmax network reported about the infrastructure bill during this particular broadcast, but other Newsmax reports have made it clear that “the pilot itself does not institute a tax.”

Related: “Fact Check: Infrastructure Bill Does NOT Include '$6,500 Tax On Dairy Cows, $2,600 Per Head On Beef...$500...On Swine'” (Alexis Tereszcuk, Lead Stories).

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