Illinois gas tax increase would negatively impact man who drives for a living

Illinois hasn’t raised its gas tax since the 1990s.

MOLINE, Illinois-- Illinois lawmakers are considering a bill that would double the state's gas tax, up to 38 cents from 19 cents, on July 1, 2019. The bill would also increase prices for new driver's license, titles, registration and license plates.

Austin Messer has delivered pizzas for Happy Joe's for seven years. He says the increase would hurt his budget.

Messer says he drives about a hundred miles a week, costing him at least $40 at the pump.

"Over the year, it'd be hundreds of dollars extra in gas for us for sure," he says. "It would probably just be that much extra money out of savings I could've saved."

Like most states, the gas tax is used for infrastructure in Illinois, repairing bridges and roads. Messer says good roads are also important for his job but questions if he would actually see roads fixed using the money in the Quad Cities area.

Some drivers News 8 spoke with say it's time for an increase.

"I'm behind Illinois 100 percent," says Gregg Bridge-Chase, who had driven into Moline from Port Byron. "I really think whatever they need to do to get the infrastructure back in order is appropriate, and I'll be happy to pay my share."

Illinois hasn't raised its gas tax since the 1990s.

The bill would raise car registration fees from $98 for a two-year period to $148. The cost of a new drivers license would double from $30 to $60.