New Jersey lawmakers approve 23-cent increase in gas tax; bill heads to Gov. Christie

New Jersey lawmakers have voted to approve a 23-cent-per-gallon hike in the gas tax to pay for transportation work.



The Democrat-led Senate and Assembly voted Friday to raise the tax from 14.5 cents a gallon to 37.5 cents a gallon to fund transportation work over eight years. The legislation also cuts the sales and estate taxes, among other measures.



The bill passed 44-27 in the Assembly and 24-14 in the Senate.



The deal would establish a $2 billion-a-year transportation trust fund over eight years that would get stalled road and transit repairs up and running again.



The tradeoff for the higher gas tax is sales and estate taxes would be cut, while offering veterans and low-income residents tax credits, among other incentives. Under the deal, the estate tax will be phased out and gone by 2018.



Republican Gov. Chris Christie helped craft the measure and is expected to sign it. If the bill is signed, it is expected to go into effect Nov. 1.



Even with the increase, New Jersey's gas tax would still remain lower than neighboring New York and Pennsylvania.



The Associated Press wire services contributed to this report.


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