Press Release from the Office of State Senator Craig Estes, District 30

For Immediate Release
May 14, 2009
Contact: Jody Withers
(512) 463-0130

Texas Legislature Passes Bill by Estes to Exempt VFD from Fuels Taxes

Austin — The Texas House passed Senate Bill 254 by State Senator Craig Estes (R-Wichita Falls) which would exempt local volunteer fire departments from state taxes on motor fuels. With passage by both the Texas Senate and Texas House, Senate Bill 254 now goes to the Governor.

"When volunteer fire departments depend on bake sales to fund their operations, we need to be a partner in making those funds go as far as possible," said Estes. "This fuel exemption isn't going to fully fund their operations, but it will help, and it is the right thing to do."

Senate Bill 254 amends the state tax code to exempt volunteer fire departments from the motor fuels taxes including both gasoline and diesel fuels. The bill also would allow an eligible volunteer fire department that had paid the motor fuel tax on the purchase of gasoline or diesel fuel to file a claim with the Comptroller for a refund of the tax.

There are about 1,491 volunteer fire departments across the state and 263 part-time pay departments.

"I want to thank State Representative Aaron Pena for carrying SB 254 through the Texas House, and to all the House members who voted for final passage," said Estes.

Senator Estes is Chairman of the Senate Committee on Agriculture and Rural Affairs, and represents Senate District 30 covering Archer, Baylor, Clay, Collin (part), Cooke, Denton (part), Grayson, Jack, Montague, Parker, Palo Pinto, Shackelford, Stephens, Throckmorton, Wichita, Wilbarger, Wise, and Young counties.