WINNIPEG, Man. — Manitoba has completed its first fuel tax accountability report, and it has given itself top marks as a result.
The province says it has invested $80 million more in roads and transportation than it received in fuel taxes during 2004-2005. Finance Minister Greg Selinger released the numbers as a new requirement in the province under the Gas Tax Accountability Act.
“The Gas Tax Accountability Act which was passed by our government in 2004 dedicates all provincial road-use fuel taxes to roads, highways and transportation systems,” said Selinger. “It also ensures the provincial government is accountable annually to Manitobans for all road-use fuel taxes collected and invested.”
In 2004-2005 the province shelled out more than $299 million in roads, highways and transportation systems, Selinger said. That compared to about $218 million collected through gas and diesel taxes.
“Manitoba has dedicated an unprecedented amount of funding towards maintaining and upgrading our roads and highways,” Selinger said. “All governments should be accountable for how they spend the fuel taxes they collect.”
He added Manitoba has the second lowest provincial fuel taxes in the country. It’s a flat 11.5 cents per litre and doesn’t fluctuate with rising fuel prices, he pointed out. For its part, the federal government collects about $160 million in fuel taxes from Manitobans and reinvests just $10 million back into the province’s roads.
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