Governor's Message to the 56th legislature. Page: 21 of 41
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Whether you decide to use this source of revenue now or in the future, it should
be reserved to the States and not encroached upon further by the Federal Government.
There is talk of the President's recommending a further increase in the Federal
gasoline tax to finance the present Federal aid program on highways. As one who
was a member of the Senate when this bill was passed, I assure you that we were
given to understand that present Federal highway user taxes would be devoted to
the Trust Fund to finance this program. Today over $1.5 billion of Federal
highway user taxes are being diverted for other purposes. If these were deposited
in the Trust Fund, there would be no need for an increase in the Federal gasoline
tax. If another two cents were added to the present Federal tax, Texas highway
users would be sending to Washington a total of $183 million more than is returned
to us for highway purposes under the present aid formula.
I urge you to petition the Congress to end the present diversion of these taxes
and to oppose any increase in the Federal gasoline tax. This is a tax that is needed
by the States. An additional one cent was requested by the Highway Commission in
1955, and the same request has been made by the present Commission. Whenever
the people of Texas are ready for further enrichment of our highway and school
programs, this is a source of revenue which must be available and which should not
be pre-empted by the Federal Government.
Another bright prospect for the future is the report of the Tax Study Commission
which indicates that once we reach the level of revenue necessary to provide
for our State programs, anticipated increasesin revenue projected to 1965 will
meet the anticipated growth and needs of the State. (State Tax Study Commission
Report No. 3, pp. 4-7; Final Report, pp. 54-57.)
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Price, Daniel. Governor's Message to the 56th legislature., book, January 21, 1959; Austin, Texas. (texashistory.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metapth5870/m1/21/: accessed July 23, 2017), University of North Texas Libraries, The Portal to Texas History, texashistory.unt.edu; .