Code of the District of Columbia

§ 47–2301. Rate; deposit into General Fund.

(a)(1) The District shall levy and collect a tax on motor vehicle fuels equal to 8.0% of the average wholesale price of a gallon of regular unleaded gasoline for the applicable base period, excluding federal and state taxes, sold or otherwise disposed of by an importer or by a user, or used for commercial purposes. In no case shall the average wholesale price computed for purposes of this section be less than $2.94.

(2) The average wholesale price shall be calculated for adjustment of the motor vehicle fuel tax effective April 1 and October 1 of each year. When computing the average wholesale price of a gallon of motor vehicle fuel, the District shall use the monthly Central Atlantic (PADD 1B) Regular Gasoline Wholesale/Resale Price by Refiners data compiled by the US Energy Information Administration, or equivalent wholesale price data. Monthly price data for the period from July 1 through December 31, rounded to the nearest one half-cent, shall be used to determine the tax for the immediately following period beginning April 1. Monthly price data for the period from January 1 through June 30, rounded to the nearest one half-cent, shall be used to determine the tax for the immediately following period beginning October 1.

(3) In no case shall an average wholesale price computed for purposes of this section vary by more than 10% from the average wholesale price for the prior period.

(b) The proceeds of the taxes imposed under §§ 47-2302 through 47-2315, and the money collected from fees charged for the registration and titling of motor vehicles, including fees charged for the issuance of permits to operate motor vehicles, shall be deposited in the General Fund of the District of Columbia established under § 47-131.

(c) The Chief Financial Officer of the District of Columbia shall transfer annually to the District of Columbia Highway Trust Fund the proceeds of the taxes imposed under subsection (a) of this section.


(Apr. 23, 1924, 43 Stat. 106, ch. 131, § 1; Aug. 17, 1937, 50 Stat. 676, ch. 690, title III, § 1; June 4, 1952, 66 Stat. 100, ch. 366, § 1; May 18, 1954, 68 Stat. 117, ch. 218, title XI, § 1101; Sept. 30, 1966, 80 Stat. 858, Pub. L. 89-610, title VIII, § 801; Dec. 15, 1971, 85 Stat. 653, Pub. L. 92-196, title III, § 301(a); Oct. 21, 1975, D.C. Law 1-23, title II, § 201, 22 DCR 2096; Jan. 22, 1976, D.C. Law 1-42, § 3(a), 22 DCR 6311; Jan. 22, 1976, D.C. Law 1-42, § 7(c), 22 DCR 6317; Mar. 4, 1981, D.C. Law 3-128, § 11(a), 28 DCR 246; Feb. 19, 1986, D.C. Law 6-80, § 2, 32 DCR 7268; July 25, 1989, D.C. Law 8-17, § 6(a), 36 DCR 4160; Sept. 10, 1992, D.C. Law 9-145, § 108, 39 DCR 4895; June 14, 1994, D.C. Law 10-128, § 108, 41 DCR 2096; enacted, Apr. 9, 1997, D.C. Law 11-254, § 2, 44 DCR 1575; Mar. 3, 2010, D.C. Law 18-111, § 7241(h), 57 DCR 181; Apr. 8, 2011, D.C. Law 18-370, § 625(c), 58 DCR 1008; Dec. 24, 2013, D.C. Law 20-61, § 7292, 60 DCR 12472.)

Prior Codifications

1981 Ed., § 47-2301.

1973 Ed., § 47-1901.

Section References

This section is referenced in § 6-703.01, § 9-1111.15, § 47-2302, § 47-2303, § 47-2312, § 47-2314, and § 50-2608.

Effect of Amendments

D.C. Law 18-111, in subsec. (a), substituted “$ .235 per gallon” for “20 cents per gallon, except for the period beginning June 1, 1994, and ending September 30, 1994, a tax of 22.5 cents per gallon,”.

D.C. Law 18-370, in subsec. (b), substituted “§§ 47-2302 through 47-2315” for “§§ 47-2301 through 47-2315’; and added subsec. (c).

The 2013 amendment by D.C. Law 20-61 rewrote (a).

Cross References

Building restrictions and regulations, fire safety, fees from hauling permits deposited in highway fund, see § 6-703.01.

Motor vehicles and traffic, biennial inspection fund, see § 50-1102.

National capital region transportation, revenues deposited in general fund and allocated to metrorail/metrobus account, see § 9-1111.15.

Regulation of parking, budget and appropriations, use of amounts from highway fund in annual budget, see § 50-2608.

Regulation of parking, fees deposited in General Fund, see § 50-2607.

Taxation and fiscal affairs, General Fund and special accounts established, see § 47-131.

Tax rates, records and surplus funds, authority of Council to change certain tax rates, see § 47-504.

Emergency Legislation

For temporary (90 day) enactment, see § 2 of Gasoline Fuel Tax Examination Emergency Act of 2005 (D.C. Act 16-188, October 28,

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 7292 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-130, July 30, 2013, 60 DCR 11384, 20 DCSTAT 1827).

For temporary (90 days) amendment of this section, see § 7292 of the Fiscal Year 2014 Budget Support Congressional Review Emergency Act of 2013 (D.C. Act 20-204, October 17, 2013, 60 DCR 15341, 20 DCSTAT 2311).

Temporary Legislation

Section 2 of D.C. Law 16-44 enacted provisions to read as follows:

“Sec. 2. Fuel cost reduction plan.

“(a) The Mayor shall submit a comprehensive plan to the Council setting forth the most appropriate method or methods that may be executed to address increasing costs associated with motor vehicle fuel and natural gas. The report shall, at a minimum examine the following methods: moving price ceilings; elimination of the gas tax in whole or in part; establishing gasoline sales-tax holidays; gas vouchers; and examining the city’s buying power to purchase home heating fuel.

“(b) The report shall include:

“(1) Historical fuel (motor vehicle, natural gas, heating oil) cost trends in the District of Columbia from calendar year 2003 through December 2005;

“(2) An assessment concerning the multiple variables that have influenced the cost shifts through the designated period; and

“(3) An assessment concerning possible price gouging, by local motor vehicle fuel retailers, and wholesalers.

“(c) The report shall be due on December 15, 2005.”

Section 4(b) of D.C. Law 16-44 provided that the act shall expire after 225 days of its having taken effect.

Short Title

Section 7291 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that Subtitle CC of Title VII of the act may be cited as the “Motor Vehicle Fuel Tax Act of 2013”.

Editor's Notes

Section 629 of D.C. Law 18-370 provided: “Sec. 629. Applicability. This subtitle shall apply as of October 1, 2011; except, that sections 622 and 623(a)(2) shall apply as of the effective date of this act.”

Applicability of D.C. Law 20-61: Section 11001 of D.C. Law 20-61 provided that, except as otherwise provided, the act shall apply as of October 1, 2013.