The main federal excise tax is 18.3 cents a gallon. Proceeds, estimated to top $37 billion in fiscal 2011, go to the Highway Trust Fund, which mostly finances the interstate highway system. Less than 3 cents a gallon goes to finance mass transit projects.
The American Petroleum Institute, the oil industry’s main lobby group, calculates federal excise, state excise and state sales taxes add up to about 49 cents a gallon, on average, nationally. Taxes account for 11 percent of the price of gas, according to the Dept. of Energy.
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