WASHINGTON - April 12 - As the peak summer drive period approaches, and with prices already surging in the Cleveland-area, Congressman Dennis J. Kucinich, author of the Gas Price Spike Act, issued the following statement today:
“Consumers in the Cleveland-area, nationwide, are being gouged at the pump while the big oil and gas companies are reaping historic profits and Congress sits on its hands.
“It is far past time, that Congress stands up for the consumer and not the big oil and gas companies. Last May, I introduced the Gas Price Spike Act. The legislation is just as relevant-if not more relevant-- today as it was the day I introduced it.
“The Gas Price Spike Act is the best, fastest, and most prudent intervention to quickly drop the price of gasoline and restore the integrity of the market.
“The only thing rising faster than the price of gasoline right now is the skyrocketing profits of the oil companies. Congress can no longer sit on the sidelines and watch as skyrocketing prices continue to take a heavy economic toll on consumers and risks further harming our economy.”
Kucinich’s bill, HR 2070, will:
· Institute a windfall profit tax on gasoline and diesel. Such a tax is to be imposed on all industry profits that are above a reasonable profit level. This proposal would not increase the cost of gasoline because this proposal does not tax the price of gasoline. It only taxes excessive profits of refineries and distributors. Any attempt to increase prices to recover the lost revenue in taxes is simply taxed at 100% making the price increase worthless.
· Transfer the revenue from the windfall profits tax to Americans who would buy ultra efficient cars, made in America, with a tax credit. These will be made directly available to the purchaser of a car that traveled over 65 miles on a single gallon of gas. Today average cars get less than 30 miles per gallon.
· Establishes a broad based, far reaching program to promote mass rail transit inter- an intra- city. The bill makes funding available to regional transit authorities to offset significantly reduced mass transit fares during times of gas price spikes.
The Gas Price Spike Act currently has 40 congressional co-sponsors.