For some weeks now, the national average gas price has been considerably above $4 per gallon. This price increase has put a pressure on the wallets of regular Americans, who are already dealing with a year-over-year inflation rate of about 8%.
The scenario is similar in New Mexico, where gas prices are currently at $4.17 per gallon. The one significant distinction is that the state has a surplus of at least $1 billion as a result of the oil and gas business. Some of those cash, according to KOAT in Albuquerque, could be distributed to state citizens.
In fact, lawmakers are likely to convene in a special session beginning Apr. 5 to discuss such a scheme.
"The Legislature and the governor are considering giving rebates to New Mexicans to offset the high cost of gasoline," KOAT political analyst Brian Sanderoff noted. "One bill that's being considered would give individuals a $350 rebate and married households $700 to help offset the high cost of gasoline."
The news organization did point out that politicians have stated that the final figures may change.
Other states have come up with their own measures to help with high gas costs in recent weeks, such as paying out tax rebates or suspending gas taxes. Georgia, Maryland, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maine, and Michigan are just a few of the states that are working to mitigate the effects of rising gas costs.
Governor Janet Mills of Maine is intending to distribute $850 cheques to each state resident, according to CBS News. The rebate "will help Maine people grapple with these increased costs by putting money directly back into their pockets," Mills said.
Meanwhile, in Minnesota, Gov. Tim Walz is pressing state lawmakers to pass bigger rebate checks instead of a $0.28 per gallon gas tax holiday. The governor's proposal calls for direct payments of $500 for single tax filers who earn less than $164,400 and $1,000 for couples who earn less than $273,470.
California Gov. Gavin Newsom has proposed giving every vehicle owner in the state a $400 tax return in the form of a debit card. The refunds would include $400 for each registered vehicle, according to the governor's office.
Proposals are also being made at the federal level. Representatives Mike Thompson (D-Calif.), John Larson (D-Conn.), and Lauren Underwood (D-Ill.) have introduced the Gas Rebate Act, which aims to provide a $100 energy rebate every time gas prices rise beyond $4 per gallon in any month for the rest of the year. Individuals would also be paid $100 for each dependent.