Democrat leaders on the California State Senate pushed forward Wednesday with legislation that would give the state a $15 billion infusion in the coming years for gas stations and other energy infrastructure.
The legislation, introduced by Sen. Scott Wiener, D-San Francisco, and Sen. Matt Dababneh, D, Oakland, is expected to be passed by the Assembly on Thursday.
It would allocate $15.5 billion over 10 years to gas stations, power plants, transmission lines and other infrastructure.
The money would come from a combination of taxes, fees and rebates, according to the bill.
The money would be earmarked for the gas stations through a special fund that would be created for the purpose of funding the construction of the new stations.
It is expected that the fund will be about $15 to $20 billion, with most of the money going to the state’s gas stations.
Wiener said the legislation is a “good starting point for a conversation about how we move forward with infrastructure.”
The gas stations are a prime example of what we need to invest in, Wiener said.
They are a vital part of the infrastructure that we need, he said.
The Assembly’s gas tax will increase by $1.50 per gallon to cover the cost of the gas tax increase.
Wieneers bill also calls for a $1 billion gas tax hike for the coming fiscal year.
Wiens proposed legislation last month would have required California to spend $15 trillion over the next 10 years, a number that would have been much higher than the $11 trillion federal spending plan.
That bill was quickly defeated in the Assembly by a vote of 26-16.
The bill, which passed the Assembly but failed to make it to the Senate, was also backed by the California Gas and Electric Association, the California Electric Power Association and the California Rural Electric Cooperative Association.
It passed the California Senate with a vote nearly identical to that of the Assembly version, 50-51.
The California Public Utilities Commission, which oversees the state utilities, has not indicated if it will approve the bill as it is now being written.