Virginia taxpayers will take a hit to their wallets today as the state-wide sales tax will rise from 5-percent to 5.3-percent. Residents of Northern Virginia and Hampton Roads will see an even greater sales tax hike, from 5-percent to 6-percent. In addition, the state gas tax of 17.5-cents per gallon will be eliminated and replaced with a 3.5 –percent sales tax on wholesale gasoline and 6-percent on diesel.

While the new gas tax should lead to lower gas prices, many suspect that gas prices will in fact not go down, instead remaining at the current price or jumping up even higher heading into the summer travel months. 

In total, House Bill 2313 amounts to a $5.9 billion tax increase on Virginians – including a provision to enact an internet sales tax pending congressional approval of the Market Place Fairness Act.  The tax hike was pushed by Governor Bob McDonnell and Speaking Bill Howell, along with Democrat lawmakers in Richmond during this past 2013 legislative session. 

“Governor Bob McDonnell should have known better. He walked down a dark alley with tax and spend Democrats and got mugged. His legacy as Governor is backing the largest tax hike in Virginia history,” said Grover Norquist, President of Americans for Tax Reform.

Norquist continued, “This is the third major tax increase that has been ushered through the Republican House of Delegates by Speaker Bill Howell. Today, Virginians will begin to feel the cost of failed leadership in Richmond.”