By JOSH FRIEDMAN
California Gov. Gavin Newsom and legislative leaders have tentatively reached a deal that calls for giving state residents hundreds of dollars in rebates in an attempt to help offset high gas prices. [ABC 7]
The agreement would return a portion of California’s record-setting $97 billion budget surplus to taxpayers under various income thresholds. Under the current agreement, single taxpayers would need to make less than $250,000 a year to qualify for a rebate, and couples would need to make a combined total of less than $500,000 a year to qualify.
Single residents who make less than $75,000 per year and couples who combined make less than $150,000 per year would receive $350 per taxpayer, as well as an extra $350 for each dependent. That means a married couple with one child, who earn a combined total of less than $150,000 per year, would receive a $1,050 rebate.
Single Californians who make between $75,000 and $125,000 per year and couples who make between $150,000 and $250,000 per year would receive $250 per taxpayer, plus another $250 for each dependent. Single Californians who make between $125,000 and $250,000 per year and couples who make between $250,000 and $500,000 per year would get $200 per taxpayer, plus $200 for each dependent.
The deal has yet to be finalized, and the numbers could change. But, a tentative agreement between Gov. Newsom and the Legislature has been reached, Assemblyman Miguel Santiago (D-Los Angeles) announced on Friday.
“As prices increase on everything from gas to baby formula, this rebate will help the vast majority of California taxpayers, including undocumented Californians, with hundreds of dollars in direct cash assistance, providing critical relief during tough times,” Santiago said in a statement.
Republicans have called for a temporary suspension of the state’s 51.1-cent-per-gallon gas tax. California’s gas tax is the second highest in the United States, and it is scheduled to increase to 53.9 cents per gallon next week.
Newsom and California Democrats have refused to suspend the gas tax.