Tax Data Series

Motor Vehicle Fuel Tax

Motor Fuel Tax
Amounts Distributed to Various Local Government Units, by County, Calendar Year 2003

All motor fuel taxes are collected by the state and distributed among state and local governmental units by statutory formula. These amounts are required by the Ohio Constitution to be used for highway purposes.

In calendar year 2003, distributions to local governments from the motor fuel tax amounted to $344.9 million. Of this amount, $145.5 million went to municipalities, $73.1 million to townships, and $126.3 million to county governments.

The fuel tax is actually composed of five separate levies: three levies of two cents each; one levy of one cent; and a cents per gallon rate. The cents per gallon rate in effect is 15 cents per gallon, and the total of the excise tax rates for fiscal year 2003 was 22 cents per gallon. Effective July 1, 2003, one levy was increased to four cents per gallon bringing the total rate in fiscal year 2004 to 24 cents. The rate increased to 26 cents per gallon effective July 1, 2004, and to 28 cents on July 1, 2005.

The motor vehicle fuel tax is composed of five separate levies. Each of these levies is distributed in a different manner. After refunds, the following transfers of receipts were made (as of July 1, 2003):


  • Waterways Safety Fund received 0.875 percent (R.C. 5735.051).
  • Wildlife Boater Angler Fund received 0.125 percent (R.C. 5735.051).
  • The amount needed to ensure that there are sufficient funds to meet all payments for highway bond retirement.
  • A portion of the motor fuel tax collected (five cents per gallon) on fuel sold at stations on the Ohio Turnpike is returned to the Ohio Turnpike Commission for turnpike projects (paid from the cents per gallon tax) (R.C.5735.23).
  • The Motor Fuel Tax Administrative Fund received 0.275 percent.

The remainder was distributed as follows:

2 cents per gallon (R.C. 5735.05, 5735.23):

2/17 of $100,000 was transferred monthly to the Grade Crossing Fund with the remainder distributed as follows:

30.0%

to municipal corporations in proportion to their motor vehicle registrations;*

25.0%

to all counties in equal amounts;*

45%

to the state.

4 cents per gallon (R.C. 5735.25, 5735.26, 5735.27):

87.5 percent to the state; The amount remaining after the above distribution is made, as well as an additional dollar amount specified in the transportation budget bill are transferred to the Gasoline Excise Tax Fund. From this total transferred amount:

42.86%

distributed to municipalities in proportion to their motor vehicle registrations;*

37.14 %

distributed to all counties in equal amounts.*

20.0%

distributed to townships by the greater of two formulas, one of which is based on allocating the total amount to townships on an equal basis, and the other based on the township's proportionate share of total township lane miles (50% weight) and the township's proportionate share of total township motor vehicle registrations (50% weight).

2 cents per gallon (R.C. 5735.29, 5735.291):

100 percent to the state for highway bond retirement funds, as long as required; thereafter, 100 percent to the State Highway Operating Fund.

1 cent per gallon (R.C. 5735.30):

100 percent to the state for highway bond retirement funds, as long as required; thereafter, 100 percent to the State Highway Operating Fund.

Cents per gallon tax, 15 cents per gallon (R.C. 5735.05, 5735.23):

Collections from 1 cent of the cents per gallon tax transferred to the Local Transportation Improvement Program Fund and 15/17 of $100,000 is transferred monthly to the Grade Crossing Fund, with the balance distributed as follows:

75.0%

to the state;

10.7%

to municipalities in proportion to their motor vehicle registrations;^

9.3%

to all counties in equal amounts; ^

5.0% to all townships in equal amounts.^

* Proceeds are deposited by the state in the Gasoline Excise Tax Fund and distributed monthly to the counties, townships, and municipalities. MV

^ Proceeds are deposited by the state in the State and Local Government Highway Distribution Fund and distributed monthly to counties, townships and municipalities.

These figures have been compiled from records of the Ohio Department of Taxation.