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White Plains, NY —  The Board of Legislators has approved gas tax relief for Westchester residents.

In a special meeting on Thursday afternoon, the Board voted 15-2 in favor of a measure to cap sales tax on gas purchases at $.12 per gallon, the equivalent of the tax drivers would pay if gas was $3.00 per gallon.  The tax relief will run from June 1 through August 31.

The relief, proposed earlier this week by County Executive George Latimer, is designed to help residents struggling with inflationary pressures and uncertainty in gas prices relating to the war in Ukraine and other market factors.

To go along with the gas tax cap, the County Executive will suspend fares on the County's Bee-Line bus system for the same period.
Because of federal transit support for the bus system, the fare holiday is expected to have no impact on the County budget.

Board Chairwoman Catherine Borgia (D-Briarcliff Manor, Cortlandt, Croton-on-Hudson, Ossining, Peekskill) said, "I'm proud of the steps we've taken in recent years to strengthen the County's finances so that we have the flexibility to help residents with this temporary tax relief.  We hope it will be a small step to help families balance their budgets this summer, a time when gas prices typically rise and families take road trips and driving vacations. Just as important is the temporary suspension of bus fares. We really want to encourage people to use less gasoline altogether. I hope the bus fare holiday will inspire more people to leave their cars at home and try the County's terrific bus system."

Legislator Vedat Gashi (D-New Castle, Somers, Yorktown), chair of the Board's Budget and Appropriations Committee, said, "I'm glad to see the County taking this step, which I strongly support. While we'd love to see everyone using less fossil fuel, the reality is many residents and businesses still rely on gasoline and any help that we can provide during this time of relatively high and uncertain pricing is something we want to do."

Legislator David Tubiolo (D-Yonkers) said, “Working families and small businesses are really feeling the pinch of high gas prices.  Of course, in County government, we can’t affect the global oil markets, but this is something we can do for the people of Westchester.  I thank the County Executive and my colleagues in the legislature for backing this measure.”