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Gas Tax Holiday Proposed For New York; Cuomo Launches Assault On Gouging

Drivers Say Enough Is Enough And Lawmakers Seem To Be Getting Message
New York State lawmakers have proposed gas tax holiday legislation. (Photo: CBS 2)

New York State lawmakers have proposed gas tax holiday legislation. (Photo: CBS 2)

NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — With gas prices reaching the stratosphere, Gov. Andrew Cuomo is mounting an aggressive campaign against price gouging.

But some lawmakers say there may be a way to give drivers a cash break at the pump, CBS 2’s Marcia Kramer reported Thursday.

Drivers are now issuing an S.O.S. to lawmakers. They want something done about pump prices, and they want it done sooner rather than later.

“Give me something. Gas prices are ridiculous,” one Bronx resident said.

“Anything would help,” added Bill Pezzulo of Merrick.

“Every day they go up. Every single day the gas prices go up,” said Steven Bernardo of the Bronx.

The price at one Manhattan station on Thursday was $4.49, but two weeks ago it was 20 cents cheaper.

That’s how bad it is.

Jeffrey Klein, the Bronx official who is co-leader of the State Senate, said that after more than a month of soaring prices, the time may have come to enact a temporary gas tax holiday to forgive at least some of the 49 cents per gallon that New Yorkers pay in taxes.

“One of the things I looked at and proposed a couple of years ago was at least a gas tax holiday on long weekends or holiday weekends when people really want to go out and enjoy their communities,” Klein said.

“We always need to consider everything, that all options on the table to make sure that we have less impact on working class people,” added Sen. Gustavo Rivera of the Bronx.

Cuomo is so concerned about the impact of high prices that he launched an all-out campaign against price gouging. He’s sending inspectors out to check not only prices but also measurement accuracy, to make sure if you pay for a gallon of gas you actually get it.

The governor is also setting up a new toll free website and hotline where consumers can report unexpected increases in gas prices.

“Anything, anything would help because this is ridiculous you know?” said Nat Brown of the Bronx, who filled his vehicle up Thursday for $88.

It may take a while for any of these proposals to take effect, leaving drivers saying hurry up.

If you think you’ve been gouged you can always call the New York Gas Pricing line at 1-800-214-4372.

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