Governor’s Tax Package Gets Some More Traction

As Massachusetts lawmakers consider ways to trim his plan to raise state spending by $1.9 billion, Governor Deval Patrick says a hike in the gas tax could be part – but only part – of the solution.

Backers say a gas tax hike of about 15 cents would raise enough money to avert further borrowing to pay transportation agency workers, and to shore up the MBTA’s finances.

But Patrick says that’s not enough – and it’s unfair.

“You’re asking everybody outside of Boston who drives a car to contribute to a Boston-centric solution and I don’t think that’s fair and I don’t think most of the members think it’s fair. Nor do I think it’s a solution to how do we get growth Commonwealth-wide.”

Patrick says he might support a modest gas tax hike. House speaker Robert Deleo says the governor’s overall plan must be scaled back.