So here's the great news as we head into a holiday weekend where more Illinoisans will be driving somewhere than we have in a decade: The new gas taxes kick in today.

If you're like me, you just want to take a moment to smack...scream at...give the finger to...uh, thank Illinois lawmakers and Governor Pritzker for the 3rd hike on gas taxes and fees in the last three years.

Illinois' motor fuel tax rate increases by a half-cent per gallon starting today, July 1st, as it goes from from 38.7 cents per gallon of gasoline to 39.2 cents per gallon.

If you recall, looking at your rapidly-emptying wallet, Illinois' gas tax last increased on July 1st of last year, when it rose by .7 cents per gallon, from 38 cents to 38.7 cents per gallon. The year before that, the gas tax doubled from 19 cents per gallon to 38 cents per gallon.

As Illinois Policy Institute points out, since 2019, the state motor fuel tax has increased 206%, doubling from 19 cents per gallon to 39.2 cents per gallon. And to make this deal even sweeter, Illinois State law mandates that the tax automatically increases with inflation by a maximum of one cent each year.

When you do the adding up of taxes and fees, it shows that the average Rockford, Illinois driver is going to pay $105 more this year when comparing to what we paid before taxes doubled up in 2019.

Illinois Policy Institute:

  • In 2020, Illinois had the third highest gas prices in the nation, following only California and Pennsylvania.
  • Every gallon of gas includes the 39.2 cent tax on top of the federal motor tax of 18.4 cents. Cook County adds an additional 6 cents and Chicago adds 8 cents per gallon.
  • Illinois is one of just a few states that taxes its taxes on gas; the combined state, county, and municipal taxes total over $1 per gallon.

To recap, this gas tax hike comes at a time when crude oil is hitting a 3-year high, the state is still struggling to recover from the pandemic and what it did to our state's and our own personal economies, and ironically enough, when Governor Pritzker is trying to push "road-trip" tourism to Illinois from other states with his "Time For Me To Drive" campaign.

Great timing.

LOOK: See how much gasoline cost the year you started driving

To find out more about how has the price of gas changed throughout the years, Stacker ran the numbers on the cost of a gallon of gasoline for each of the last 84 years. Using data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (released in April 2020), we analyzed the average price for a gallon of unleaded regular gasoline from 1976 to 2020 along with the Consumer Price Index (CPI) for unleaded regular gasoline from 1937 to 1976, including the absolute and inflation-adjusted prices for each year.

Read on to explore the cost of gas over time and rediscover just how much a gallon was when you first started driving.

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