FILE - Gas station, fuel tax

Drivers in Wisconsin could soon see something new when they fill up. State Rep. Rob Hutton, R-Brookfield, wants to put a sticker on every gas pump in the state that lets people know just how much of the cost of gas goes to the government. 

"Just about every other thing that you buy, you have a separate line item for the tax," Hutton said. "We don't have that in Wisconsin for our fuel pumps."

Hutton said he asked around his Brookfield district and realized people had no idea they were paying the state of Wisconsin nearly 33 cents per gallon in taxes, and another 18 and a half-cents in taxes to the federal government. 

"If we're going to talk about the gas tax, and whether we're going to raise it for additional spending at WIS-DOT, the question became how many people even know how much they pay in gas taxes every time they fill up at the pump?"  Hutton said Thursday.  

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers wants to raise the gas tax in the state by eight cents a gallon.  He says the money could go to build or maintain roads. 

Hutton said once people know how much they are already paying in taxes, they may see the governor's proposal in a new light. 

"Very few people realize that every time they go to fill up that 20 gallon tank in their minivan, that as much as $10 is going to taxes. And that has nothing to do with driving that minivan any more miles," Hutton said. "I think that would create significant sticker shock for the average person. And frankly, it's their money. They have a right to know."

Hutton said if people see the tax sticker, then drive on a pot hole-riddled-road and decide the state needs more, that'd be fine too. 

State Sen. Dewey Strobel, R-Cedarburg, is handling the gas tax sticker plan in the Senate. Hutton says he expects plenty of support. But he's not guessing what Gov. Evers thinks. 

"The administration is mum at this point, on this and other budgetary issues," Hutton said. "We have not heard anything from the governor's office."


An industry veteran with two decades of experience in media, Benjamin Yount reports on Illinois and Wisconsin statewide issues for The Center Square.