Special Report

States With the Highest (and Lowest) Gas Taxes

11. Alabama
> Tax as pct. of gas price: 10.6% (11th lowest)
> State fuel tax: 20.9 cents per gallon (11th lowest)
> Gas price: $1.97 (18th lowest)

Consumers in Alabama spend just 20.9 cents on state gasoline taxes and fees, well below the national average of nearly 30 cents. In general, Alabamians face low tax burdens, paying just 8.3% of their incomes in state and local taxes as of 2011, according to the Tax Foundation. By comparison, the average American spent almost 10% of their incomes on such taxes.

ALSO READ: States With the Best (and Worst) Schools

12. Texas
> Tax as pct. of gas price: 10.6% (12th lowest)
> State fuel tax: 20.0 cents per gallon (9th lowest)
> Gas price: $1.88 (4th lowest)

Texas is the largest producer of petroleum in the nation. The state’s 27 oil refineries accounted for nearly 30% of the nation’s crude oil refining capacity as of January 2014. Texas’ economic dependence on the oil industry may partly account for the exceptionally low cost of fuel. Drivers in the state paid less than $1.90 per gallon, the fourth lowest gas price nationwide.

13. New Hampshire
> Tax as pct. of gas price: 10.9% (13th lowest)
> State fuel tax: 23.8 cents per gallon (20th lowest)
> Gas price: $2.20 (18th highest)

New Hampshire’s state government collected $1,674 per capita in taxes during fiscal 2012, the lowest nationwide. The absence of both a sales tax and a tax on earnings largely accounts for the friendly tax climate in New Hampshire. The fuel tax of 23.8 cents per gallon, however — while among the lower figures reviewed — was not low enough to bring the overall cost of fuel lower than most states.

ALSO READ: The Poorest County in Each State

14. North Dakota
> Tax as pct. of gas price: 10.9% (14th lowest)
> State fuel tax: 23.0 cents per gallon (18th lowest)
> Gas price: $2.11 (21st highest)

lthough North Dakota’s oil boom has made it the second largest oil producing state, behind Texas, the state’s gas prices are actually quite high. This is likely due in part to the state’s distance from much of the nation’s oil infrastructure. The state’s pipelines and rail lines export most of its oil to other states to be refined and sold. Also there is just one refinery in North Dakota.

15. South Dakota
> Tax as pct. of gas price: 11.0% (15th lowest)
> State fuel tax: 22.0 cents per gallon (14th lowest)
> Gas price: $2.00 (20th lowest)

Drivers pay 22 cents per gallon in state taxes in South Dakota, one of the lower fuel tax rates nationwide. While this helped lower the overall price of fuel, the state may have more difficulty funding infrastructural projects in the near future if it does not raise the tax. The South Dakota Legislature is currently considering a bill that would raise fuel taxes gradually over the next decade.