Deb Billado: Carbon tax on agenda again

Editor’s note: This commentary is by Deb Billado, chairwoman of the Vermont GOP.

My philosophy has always been that if it looks like a carbon tax and smells like a carbon tax, it’s probably a carbon tax. That was my exact reaction when I heard Burlington Mayor Miro Weinberger (D) was proposing a statewide “carbon pollution fee.”

While Weinberger tried to draw a distinction between his proposal and a carbon tax, we all know the proposal would have the same detrimental impact on Vermonters just struggling to put fuel in their tank or heat their homes.

In fact, the Vermont Fuel Dealers Association (VFDA) created a website,, which illustrates just how burdensome this new carbon “fee” proposal would be. In fact, according to the VFDA, this new scheme would impose an astonishing $1 billion tax on Vermonters, and could lower our state’s GDP by about 1 percent. This tax would kill jobs and stifle economic development in Vermont as entrepreneurs look to more tax-friendly states.

We all know a carbon tax would especially hurt lower-income Vermonters who can’t afford expensive electric vehicles, as well as rural Vermonters who have to make long commutes for work or are unable to rely on public transportation. This tax would constitute a massive wealth transfer from our state’s struggling rural areas to Burlington.

So this legislative session, keep an eye on the bills your legislators introduce – -because the carbon tax is back again. We need to hold the lawmakers who push it accountable for their disastrous actions.

To learn more about the details and impact of the carbon tax, click here.

Image courtesy of Mario Roberto Durán Ortiz/Wikimedia Commons