Legislation currently sitting in the U.S. Senate opposing any increase to the federal excise tax on new heavy-duty trucks drew the applause of American Truck Dealers Chairman Steve Parker last month.
Sen. Cory Gardner (R-Colo.) introduced S.Con.Res. 40, putting the Senate on record opposing an increase of the FET, which at 12 percent is already the highest tax by percentage levied by Congress on any product.
Companion legislation, H.Con.Res. 33, was introduced in the House by Reps. Reid Ribble (R-Wis.) and Tim Walz (D-Minn.) last year and has 30 bipartisan cosponsors.
“The existing 12-percent FET on heavy-duty trucks, which adds nearly $20,000 to the cost of a new truck, is already a severe detriment to businesses looking to replace aging fleets with newer, safer and more fuel-efficient vehicles,” said Parker, president of Baltimore Potomac Truck Centers. “An increase in the FET would only further deter these important investments that help keep our roads safer.”
The FET originally was imposed to help defray the cost of World War I. Since 1955, the excise tax rate on new heavy-duty trucks, tractors and trailers has increased by 300 percent, ballooning from 3 percent to its current rate of 12 percent.