Last year, we started hearing rumblings that some legislators, both in Michigan and in other states, were talking about targeting electric vehicles and hybrids for an extra tax. From what we heard, their rationale was that because these vehicles use less gasoline, they generate less gas-tax revenues for the state, so their owners were getting a “free ride,” not contributing their fair share to highway maintenance.
So at the Built By Michigan coalition, we decided we better take a close look at this issue. And guess what? We found that electric vehicles contribute more gross revenue and more revenue per mile for state coffers than traditional vehicles, primarily because of their relatively higher price generates more sales taxes and registration fees. So the argument that electric vehicles receive a “free ride” shouldn’t get any traction.
And our arithmetic doesn’t even begin to take into account how many jobs Michigan stands to gain from remaining the leader in research and manufacturing of alternative-fuel vehicles.
But two members of the Michigan legislature apparently hadn’t read our report when they recently introduced bills targeting electric vehicles and hybrids for increased registration fees.
Which is why we’re asking our supporters to contact their representatives and let them know that this isn’t the time for Michigan to stall out on our race to the future. We sent out an appeal to our readers last week, and nearly 250 of you have already responded.
In fact, we have already heard from several members of the committee that they are getting numerous emails opposing these bills, and they do pay attention. Please help us increase those numbers by letting your legislators know that Michigan should be looking for ways to get more people back to work rather than putting new obstacles in the way, I hope you’ll click this link—we’ll take it from there and make sure your message gets to ears of the right people in Lansing.
Climate & Energy Program Director
The Ecology Center