Bill To Repeal 12% Excise Tax On Heavy Trucks Introduced

Washington D.C. – A bill to repeal the 12% federal excise tax (FET) on new heavy trucks has once again been introduced into the U.S. House of Representatives.

On Monday, April 29, U.S. House Representatives Doug LaMalfa (R-CA) and Collin Peterson (D-MN) introduced H.R.2381 with the intent “to amend the Internal Revenue Code of 1986 to repeal the excise tax on heavy trucks and trailers, and for other purposes,” according to the text of the bill.

The legislation takes aim at the FET calling it “the highest percentage rate of any Federal ad valorem excise tax.”


It is estimated the FET adds from $12,000 to 22,000 to the cost of a heavy truck, tractor, or trailer.

Reps. LaMalfa and Peterson believe such a cost burden is discouraging buyers from purchasing newer, more fuel efficient and environmentally-conscious vehicles.

“Congress should advance the deployment of the most modern, clean, and safe trucks through eliminating the Federal excise on trucks,” the bill reads.

Further, the legislation states, “since the Federal retail excise tax on certain new heavy trucks, tractors, and trailers is based on annual sales, receipts from the tax deposited in the Highway Trust Fund can vary greatly.”

As a result, Reps. LaMalfa and Peterson support Congress finding a “more reliable and consistent revenue mechanism to protect the Highway Trust Fund.”



The Owner Operator Independent Drivers Association (OOIDA) says it isn’t against repealing the FET, but wants to know what funding mechanism will be deployed in its place before taking a position.

In a statement, Mike Matousek, OOIDA’s manager of government affairs said,

“OOIDA isn’t opposed to repealing the FET, but Congress must identify an offset first. Meaning, repealing the FET would create a reduction in tax revenue that would need to be replaced somehow. We will remain neutral until an offset is identified and until we know exactly how the offset would impact our members.”


The National Truck Dealers Association (NTDA) is not neutral.

NTDA president Gnewdolyn Brown said, “The Federal Excise Tax has long been an unfair method of taxing the truck and trailer industry. The NTDA supports legislation that encourages the sale of newer trailers and that more fairly supports the construction and maintenance of our highways and roads.”

A coalition formed was formed earlier this year called Modernize the Truck Fleet which made it a goal to eliminate the FET.

Members of the coalition include: American Truck Dealers, Truck and Engine Manufacturers Association, NTEA –The Association for the Work Truck Industry and the Truck Renting & Leasing Association.


The Truck Renting & Leasing Association also supports the legislation.

The time has come to remove this outdated tax,” said Jake Jacoby, TRALA president and chief executive officer. “Congress needs a funding source for the Highway Trust Fund that is less volatile and that does not hurt manufacturers, truck dealers, and purchasers of new vehicles and equipment.”

The bill has been referred to the U.S. House, Ways and Means Committee for consideration.




(Image courtesy of TLG-Peterbilt/Facebook)

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