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Connecticut suspends state gas tax through June 30

Connecticut temporarily suspends gas tax, bus fares 02:06

HARTFORD, Conn. -- Drivers in Connecticut are getting some relief at the pump as a temporary suspension of the state's gas tax took effect Friday.

In Connecticut, the average gas tax is about 25 cents per gallon, but drivers will not have to pay it for the next three months, CBS2's Natalie Duddridge reported.

"Couple weeks ago I pay for this car like $55. Now I'm paying $75 for the gas," said Greenwich resident Carlos Sierra, who estimates he'll save about $7 a week.

"That helps me for a dinner, probably, with my wife and my kids," Sierra said.

Gov. Ned Lamont signed the bill cutting the gas tax last week.

"While 47 other states are still studying what to do about it, I wanted to act fast and we're one of the first to do it," Lamont said.

Maryland and Georgia have similar suspensions in place.

The temporary law also suspends fares on public buses for the next three months.

"For folks who rely upon a bus, or to get more people into the bus going forward, that's going to be free service at least for the next 90 days. What a difference that can make," Lamont said.

"For some people there's no other option, so I'm all for that," bus rider Veronica Bilenkin said.

Gas prices have soared in recent weeks. The national average for a gallon of regular is $4.20 according to AAA, up from $2.80 a year ago.

"Gas prices have gone up dramatically, 15, 20, 25 percent in a week's time. So it's been a big shock for a lot of people," said Stamford resident Roger Galindo. "So any kind of relief, a tax break of some sort, would help working families."

On Thursday, President Biden announced the U.S. will use oil from strategic reserves to help force gas prices down. But some think that move, along with the gas tax pause, will hurt the state later on.

"It helps a few people, but not a lot of people," said Greenwich resident Nadia Harris.

"You're treating the symptom, but not the illness," said Greenwich resident Mark Zelenz. "Same thing with what I hear now, they're gonna put the oil from the reserves, same thing. What happens later on when that's run dry? Now we're gonna be in a bigger deficit for the state, which I'm not a fan of."

Some New York legislators have backed suspending their state's gas tax. New Jersey lawmakers are looking at cutting the gas tax in half.

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