SALEM — The second of four increases in the gas tax goes into effect Jan. 1. The increase is part of House Bill 2017, the “Keep Oregon Moving” act the Oregon Legislature passed in 2017.
This is the second 4-cents, per-gallon increase. The first went into effect in 2018.
Under the new law, Oregon lawmakers set requirement the Oregon Department of Transportation and Oregon cities and counties must meet to trigger the increase. The Oregon Transportation Commission sent the Legislature a report outlining how ODOT and local governments met those requirements. Two more 2-cent gas tax increases in 2022 and 2024 are on deck — but if ODOT meets additional accountability requirements for a total of 10 cents.
The legislation tied the gas tax increases to ODOT completing two specific projects to help address congestion on Interstate 205. The state road department also worked with Oregon cities and counties to produce a website detailing the condition of the major roads and all Oregon bridges. The site grades the major roads in and through communities as good, fair or poor so people can see what they’re getting for their increased taxes.
ODOT also had to provide a list of shovel-ready projects that could be constructed with additional funds and report on the agency’s efforts to address congestion through a number of other important projects in the Portland metro region.
At full implementation in 2024, Oregon’s gas tax will be 40 cents a gallon, still less than the gas tax in either Washington or California. The law also allows counties and cities to add their own local gas tax.