The Hawaii state House and Senate recently voted to extend a $3 surcharge on rental cars for an additional year, the Bizjournals reports.
The surcharge was initially set to decrease to $2 in August, but will now remain at $3 until August, 2008. Along with cars, the surcharge will also apply to tour vans and buses, with the amount depending on the number of seats in the vehicle.
The bill also establishes a House-Senate task force to conduct a study on the state highway fund, which is funded largely by fuel taxes and the rental surcharge. For every $1 levied in the rental car surcharge, about $14 million is generated for the fund.
According to the Bizjournals, legislators said they didn't want to cut the surcharge because the state's highways need so much repair work. They had considered raising the charge to $4.
The increase was naturally opposed by tour and rental agencies, who said the charge was another way in which Hawaii is getting too expensive for many vacationers.