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Preface & Introduction – Highway Taxes and Fees 2008 – Motor Fuel Data and the Highway Trust Fund – OHPI – FHWA

Motor Fuel Data and the Highway Trust Fund

Highway Taxes and Fees 2008

Preface & Introduction


This publication was prepared by the Office of Highway Policy Information, Federal Highway Administration. Highway Taxes and Fees, How They Are Collected and Distributed was first published in 1981. It contains State submitted information on taxes and fees collected and distributed. However, certain tables appearing in this publication were periodically included from 1946 to 1977 in the annual publication Highway Statistics. The following issues of Highway Taxes and Fees, How They Are Collected and Distributed are available on microfiche or as a paper copy from the Department of Commerce, National Technical Information Service (NTIS), 5285 Port Royal Road, Springfield, Virginia 22161. Placing orders with or making inquiries of NTIS can be made over the Internet http://www.ntis.gov; by phone at 1-800-553-6847 or (703) 605-6000; or by fax at (703) 321-8547. The following accession numbers and prices are to be used in ordering from NTIS. The listed prices are subject to change. A handling charge $5.00 is added to each order.

Year Accession Number Cost per paper copy Cost per microfiche copy
1981 PB89-152045/LL$48.00$21.00
1982 PB90-171950/LL$48.00$21.00
1984 PB89-152052/LL$48.00$21.00
1986 PB91-224386/LL$48.00$21.00
1988 PB88-230669/LL$48.00$21.00
1991 PB91-223727/LL$48.00$27.00
1993 PB93-207629/LL$60.00$2700
1995 PB95-249801/LL$60.00$2700
1998 PB2000102249/LL$60.00$27.00


This publication presents tabular information on State and Federal laws that provide for the taxation of motor fuels, motor vehicles, motor carriers, and licensed drivers, and the distribution of revenues from these highway taxes and fees. Also included are tables that show the use of other State taxes for highways and the involvement of Federal agencies and Federal funds in highway activities. The information presented is based on data obtained from State authorities and the laws of the various States.

Motor Fuels

Data on motor fuels, including the State gallonage tax rates on gasoline, diesel, liquefied petroleum gas, and gasohol, and sales taxes on motor fuels are summarized in Table MF-121T. Tables MF-101 through MF-105 provide data on State laws for administering gasoline and special-fuel taxes.

The current version of Table MF-104 reflects the fundamental shift in the taxation of Interstate motor carriers caused by the International Fuel Tax Agreement (IFTA). As of September 30, 1996, all States and Canadian Provinces have become participating members in IFTA. IFTA replaced individual State motor-fuel tax provisions on Interstate motor carriers with a uniform method of reconciling motor-carrier taxation among member jurisdictions.

Tables MF-107 through MF-109 summarize the State licenses and fees imposed on wholesalers, retailers, and users of motor fuel. Table MF-110 gives the fee schedule for the inspection of liquid fuels. Table MF-106 details the legal provisions governing the disposition of State motor-fuel tax receipts. In States that deposit motor-fuel, motor vehicle and other revenues in a common fund, the distribution and use of these revenues are reported in Table MF-106.

Motor Vehicles

Table MV-103 summarizes data on motor vehicles and includes the fee schedule for registering automobiles, single-unit trucks, tractor-trucks, semitrailers, twin semitrailer combinations, and the typical fee for each class of vehicle, including 3-axle and 5-axle combinations and the twin semitrailer combinations. Table MV-106 gives the provisions governing the disposition of State motor-vehicle, motor-carrier, and driver-license revenues.

Other State

An additional table is included to show other State funding for highways. Table S-106 shows the allocation of State taxes and fees for highways, but not considered to be highway-user revenue. Highway-user revenue are taxes and fees levied on the owners and operators of motor vehicles for their use of the public highways, which are included in the MF and MV table series. Not all taxes paid by highway users are considered to be highway-user revenue.

The distinction between highway-user taxes and other State taxes that are dedicated for highways is sometimes difficult to determine. Sales and use taxes, gross receipts taxes and ad valorem property taxes are not considered highway-user imposts when they are part of general tax structures and are applied to a variety of commodities not related to highways. If a tax is applied to a broad spectrum of commodities (even if a given portion is dedicated to highways), FHWA considers it to be a nonuser tax and is included in Table S-106.


Two tables on Federal funding for highways are included. Table FE-21B summarizes Federal motor-fuel and motor-vehicle taxes. Table F-106 lists the provisions governing the allocation of Federal funds for highway purposes. The data for Table F-106 are primarily obtained from the Federal budget

Page last modified on November 7, 2014.
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