FROM STAFF REPORTS
South Carolina consumers will soon see an increase at the gas pump.
According to a news release from S.C. Department of Revenue, South Carolina's Motor Fuel User Fee will increase from 20 cents to 22 cents per gallon beginning July 1. This fee, which helps support road, bridge and infrastructure work in the state, is part of the South Carolina Infrastructure and Economic Development Reform Act passed by the General Assembly in 2017, which raises the fee by $0.02 each July until 2022.
Effective dates and the rate change are as follows: July 1, 2017-June 30, 2018, 18 cents; July 1, 2018-June 30, 2019, 20 cents; July 1, 2019 to June 30, 2020, 22 cents; July 1, 2020-June 30, 2021, 24 cents; July 1, 2021-June 30, 2022, 26 cents; and July 1, 2022 and after, 28 cents.
This number does not include the inspection fee ($0.0025) and the environmental impact fee ($0.005) which have not changed and are still applied to motor fuel.
According to the S.C. Department of Transportation, from July 1, 2017 (when the Motor Fuel User Fee first increased) through April 2019, more than $657 million has been deposited in the state Infrastructure Maintenance Trust Fund, including $185.3 million in increased Motor Fuel User Fee revenues.
Income Tax Credit
Beginning in 2019 - for the 2018 tax year - S.C. taxpayers can claim a credit for the lesser of the maintenance fees they paid during the year on their vehicles or what they paid in the increased Motor Fuel User Fee.
Preliminary SCDOR data shows that 120,585 taxpayers took advantage of the credit this year, receiving $1.8 million in credits, below the $40 million cap set by lawmakers for the credit's first year.
The average credit per return was $23.65, while the average credit per taxpayer was $15.21, according to the data. The average credit is expected to rise next year because of the increased Motor Fuel User Fee.
For additional information on the Motor Fuel User Fee and Income Tax Credit, visit dor.sc.gov.
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