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Group plans to boycott gas tax increase

(WSIL) — In less than a week, drivers will begin paying more at the pump. 

Currently the state collects 19 cents on each gallon of gas sold and 21.5 cents on diesel, but under the new legislation both of those rates will double. 

Starting July 1, a gallon of gasoline will increase to 38 cents and diesel will rise to 45.5 cents a gallon. 

Drivers throughout the state are still frustrated at the idea of the increase

A group created on Facebook plans to boycott the tax. 

Members of the Facebook group are planning to travel into Missouri, Indiana, Iowa, Kentucky or Wisconsin to fill up their tanks. 

The leader of the boycott said she and other drivers are putting their foot down on the gas tax. 

Lori Fuller is one of two sisters from the Metro East who started the Facebook page. 

"You know, you can’t pour gas into the harbor, so we decided a boycott would be in order," Fuller said. 

Fuller said the page was started because she couldn’t handle any more taxes. 

"We just want to make our voices heard and we want people to know that we can’t handle anymore taxes," Fuller said. "The main goal is to send a message to lawmakers that we are unhappy."

Gov. JB Pritzker’s staff said the increase is expected to cost the average driver $100 dollars a year. 

"If people have to decided whether they are going to eat lunch today at work or have gas in your car, that’s a problem," Fuller said. 

Zeigler resident Brandon Shelton drives a diesel truck. 

His fuel bill will increase by 24 cents a gallon starting on July 1. 

"Fuel goes up, everything goes up," Shelton said. "It’s ridiculous and they are taxing everybody to death."

Shelter said he fills his tank up at least once a week and currently it cost him nearly $70 every time. 

"It’s a lot of money," Shelton said. 

Shelton believes this fuel increase is going to hurt everyone. 

"The guys that are driving for a living, hauling all our commodities, the price is going to go to the shelf," Shelton said. 

Fuller is concerned about gas stations losing business due to the tax increase. 

"The convince store owners and the gas station owners are going to be losing business, they will be laying people off," Fuller said.

Shelton said recent bills passed by lawmakers make him want to move out of Illinois. 

Fuller, along with members of the group on Facebook, are ready to drive across state lines for their fuel. 

"I will drive out of my way for 30 cents a gallon," Fuller said. 

On average, this new tax is expected to break down to at least $2 more every time you fill up your car. 

During overtime for the spring session the first weekend in June, Illinois lawmakers voted to pass a $45 billion capital infrastructure plan. 

The revenue for that bill comes from an increase of taxes on things like cigarettes, vehicle registration and gasoline. 

This increase makes Illinois the second highest state in the nation for gas tax behind New York and California who are tied. 

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News 3 Staff

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