Gas was so cheap at the Arco in Indio off of Jefferson St., the line of cars waiting to pay $1.99 for regular unleaded stretched a block away.
Elisa Ortiz who lives in Indio says she waited in line for over forty minutes, but says it was well worth it because she usually fills up for around $40.00, "It’s great maybe I get to treat the kids to dinner tonight."
A single mom, who would only identify herself as Maria says she ran out of gas while trying to get the deal. She and others we spoke with say they’re frustrated by the 12 cent tax increase that went into effect this year.
"Hard especially for single parents, so it’s hard," she says.
"Everything’s out of control, the prices are too high, we can’t afford it," says Leonel Flores from Indio who waited in the line at least a half hour.
Paul Luszcz says he can afford it but, " The gardeners, landscapers, house cleaners they’re the ones who have to go to work everyday, I’m retired, I don’t have to drive, these poor people do, and they’re the ones that are taking the blunt of the taxes that supposedly the Democrats in California want to help out and protect so."
So he showed up for more than cheap gas, he’s there to support Reform California, the political action committee who put on the promotion to collect enough signatures to repeal the gas tax and put it on the ballot.
Kimberlin Brown Pelzer, a Republican running for the 36th Congressional District, who co chairs the Repeal the Gas Tax Campaign says, she’s spoken with people on both sides of the isle want it repealed, "This is a non partisan issue 100 percent, when you look at the people who are affected by this tax you’re taking about families on fixed income, you’re talking about seniors … they can’t afford this tax,"
Nachhattar Chandi, the CEO of Chandi Group USA, Inc., who owns several gas stations across the valley including the one that held the promotion says giving deal will cost him thousands, but he’s supporting the repeal is a matter of principle, "Just think about it if there’s big lines, they want to save a dollar on a gallon, why are taxes so high, where are we going to end up?’
The gas tax includes a DMV fee, even for electric cars. It will raise over $12 billion over the next 10 years to repair roads and build new transportation infrastructure. Proponents of the gas tax say the funds are desperately needed to fix the state’s crumbling roads, outdated and unsafe infrastructure and if it’s not fixed it will cost drivers more in the long run and the state more in temporary fixes, ultimately affecting the state’s economy.
Pelzer disagrees, "Californians already pay some of the highest taxes in the nation and yet our roads are still the fourth worst in the nation, how does that happen, that happens because funds aren’t properly spent … and that’s got to change."
Reform California says they need 584,000 signatures to get it on the ballot and have already collected 400,00 and at this event alone collected hundreds.