A new proposal was put forth by Gov. Bill Lee (R-TN) that seeks to place a hold on the grocery tax at the state level as the national level in inflation continues to climb.
This plan comes just two weeks in the wake of the Department of Labor claiming that the rate of consumer price inflation managed to hit 7.9% in February, the highest it has been in forty years. Lee put forth the argument that a simple 30-day pause on the 4% grocery tax at the state level would “provide direct financial relief” to the people of Tennessee who are working to deal with the increasing price levels.
“As Americans see their cost-of-living skyrocket amid historic inflation, suspending the grocery tax is the most effective way to provide direct relief to every Tennessean,” claimed Lee in a comment. “Our state has the ability to put dollars back in the pockets of hardworking Tennesseans, and I thank members of the General Assembly for their continued partnership in maintaining our fiscally conservative approach.”
Lee is planning to include his new proposal as part of the budget amendment for the upcoming fiscal year, which is slated to be given out on March 29th.
As reported by The Tennessean, this move follows in the wake of a pair of Democratic state representatives calling on Lee to place a stop on the collection of the state’s gas tax for about 90 days solely for the “benefit of Tennessee’s working families.” Residents are currently dealing with a gas tax at slightly above $0.27.
Various governors and other lawmakers across the country are now thinking about a similar measure to attempt and help with the inflationary pressures currently assaulting their respective constituents.
The details were recently shared by Gov. Gavin Newsom (D-CA) about his efforts to try and give $400 to California residents for each registered vehicle in the state. The massive $11 billion plan is meant to assist with the ever-climbing price of gas in California, where the current price of gas sits at $5.88 per gallon.
Newsom has gone on record pinning the blame on Russian President Vladimir Putin, outright failing to talk about the role of Old Uncle Joe in going against any new energy projects.
“We’re taking immediate action to get money directly into the pockets of Californians who are facing higher gas prices as a direct result of Putin’s invasion of Ukraine,” claimed Newsom in another statement. “But this package is also focused on protecting people from volatile gas prices, and advancing clean transportation — providing three months of free public transportation, fast-tracking electric vehicle incentives and charging stations, and new funding for local biking and walking projects.”
These gas prices, which directly affect almost every facet of the American economy, are having a direct impact on the price of groceries. Beyond the cost of fuel required to transport the food across the country, for example, Instacart, the grocery delivery company, put out an announcement of their implementation of a gas surcharge this past Friday, raising the price of every single order by $.40.
“In a time of increased fuel costs across North America, we know that every cent counts, and we’re hopeful this temporary fuel assistance will help offset some of the near-term challenges that shoppers are facing,” stated Tom Maguire, the Instacart Vice President of Operations and Care.