Letter to Climate Council

To the Vermont Climate Council:

"We the undersigned members of the Vermont House of Representatives and Senate are writing to register our opposition to Vermont joining the Transportation Climate Initiative (TCI), which we understand you intend to recommend as part of your Climate Action Plan.

We do not think Vermont should join TCI for the following reasons:

The TCI would function in practice as a carbon tax on motor fuels (gasoline and on-road diesel), raising prices on those products in order to discourage their use. Such a tax increase would disproportionately and regressively impact

low income and rural drivers, making TCI particularly harmful to a state like Vermont. At this time, due to cost and other factors, practical alternatives to driving internal combustion engine vehicles do not exist for most Vermonters.

As a result, this would make the TCI a particularly cruel policy for many, many Vermonters.

As you are certainly aware, gasoline and diesel prices have already increased 75% since January 2021. Any added increase to that burden on Vermont drivers such as what would result from Vermont’s participation in TCI (with your estimates being between $20 and $30 million annually) is especially undesirable at this time.

At this juncture the States of Maine, New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island and Connecticut have removed themselves as players in the TCI arena. This leaves Vermont as the lone remaining New England state to even have the prospect of this regressive tax still on the table.

Even if the TCI were, in theory, a good proposal that Vermont would benefit from participating in (which we contend it is not), we feel it is totally inappropriate for the Climate Council to put this initiative forward as a key funding mechanism for the Climate Action Plan or as a calculated factor in future greenhouse gas reduction."



Representative Sally Achey 
Representative Thomas Burditt 
Representative Peter Fagan 
Representative Marty Feltus 
Representative Lisa Hango 
Representative Mark Higley 
Representative Samantha Lefebvre 
Representative Lee Morgan 
Representative Michael Morgan 
Representative Woodman Page 
Representative John Palasik 
Representative Joseph Parsons 
Representative Art Peterson 
Representative Patrick Seymour 
Representative Heidi Scheuermann
Representative Brian Smith 
Representative Vicki Strong 
Representative Terri Williams 

Senator Joseph Benning