Montpelier, VT –  Vermonters need to look no further than this month’s bills, or last month’s workforce report, to know that the state’s affordability crisis is real.

After five years of unchecked Democrat party rule in Montpelier, the costs of living and taxes have skyrocketed and the expanding burden of funding the services of government have shifted to fewer and fewer workers.

Vermont Democrats — and their political allies like VPIRG — have continued to deny the existence of an affordability crisis.  They continue to insist on taking actions that drive costs higher and make Vermont less affordable for families, seniors, young people and businesses.  It’s no wonder the workforce is shrinking at the fastest rate in more than a decade.

Over two dozen Vermont Democrats have proposed raising the tax on gasoline by a staggering 88-cents per gallon, and they’d like to extend the tax to heating fuels and other carbon sources.  They have introduced two separate bills in the legislature to accomplish this task — a strong indicator of their resolve on this issue.  And several members of the Democrat leadership, including the Speaker of the House, have indicated that it will be a multi-year discussion — which is political double speak for “we know we can’t pass it in an election year.”

Vermont Republicans will continue to speak out on behalf of our working families who want to see the economy grow.  

We know how much less affordable our state would be if the Democrats made everyone pay an additional 88-cents per gallon for gasoline or their heating oil.  

We know how this additional tax burden would drive up prices and force even more workers — and more jobs — outside our borders.  

We know the competitive challenge this tax would impose on small business owners.  

And we know that environmental improvements, like cleaning up the lake and encouraging energy conservation, require a strong and growing economy.

Unfortunately, the Vermont Democrats — who enjoy complete control of state government — don’t share this view.   The only thing they seem to know is how to do the same things they’ve always done.  

It’s time for a change.