Tax Data Series

Motor Vehicle Fuel Tax

Amounts Distributed to Various Local Government Units, by County, Calendar Year 2009

In calendar year 2009, distributions to local governments from the motor fuel tax were $563.6 million. Of this amount, $238.3 million went to municipalities, $120.1 million to townships, and $205.2 million to county governments.

All motor fuel taxes are collected by the state and distributed among state and local governmental units according to  statutory formula. Motor fuel tax revenues are required by the Ohio Constitution to be used only for highway purposes.  The current motor fuel tax rate per gallon, effective July 1, 2005, is 28 cents.

The total 28 cents per gallon rate is actually composed of five separate levies: two levies of two cents each; one levy of eight cents; one levy of one cent; and a cents per gallon rate of 15 cents. Each of these levies is distributed in a different manner.

However, before any distributions are made, the Treasurer of State deposits $1.6 million of motor fuel tax revenues to the State Highway Safety Fund for the costs of administration and enforcement of state laws governing the registration and operation of motor vehicles. This distribution was a two-year temporary provision of law that was scheduled to expire on July 1, 2009.  After amounts are set aside for refunds and highway bond retirement, the following transfers of receipts were made:

  • Waterways Safety Fund received 0.875 percent (R.C. 5735.051).
  • Wildlife Boater Angler Fund received 0.125 percent (R.C. 5735.051)
  • An amount equal to five cents for each gallon sold at stations operated by the Ohio Turnpike was 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%

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

25%

to all counties in equal amounts;*

45%

to the state.

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

67.5%

to the state;

7.5%

to all counties in equal amounts;*

17.5%

to all townships in equal amounts;*

7.5% to municipalities in proportion to their motor vehicle registrations.*

8 cents per gallon (R.C. 5735.29, 5735.291)

83.3 percent to the State Highway Operating Fund. 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%

distributed to all townships by the greater of either the equal share of the total amount allocated to all townships or a proportionate share based on township lane miles and the township's proportion of motor vehicle registrations.*

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.

^ 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.