Tags: government | force | buy | electric | vehicle

Can the Government Force You Buy an Electric Vehicle?

(Madmaxer/Dreamstime)

By Friday, 12 June 2020 08:22 AM Current | Bio | Archive

Electric cars are owned by few, but subsidized by all. That’s every single tax payer.

The question is: can the government make you buy an Electric vehicle?

1. Both federal and state governments have generous handouts for electric vehicles. Federal government uses your tax dollars to pay for the $7500 and many states offer $2000 or more to purchase an EV. Some manufacturers such as GM and Tesla are phasing out as a result of hitting sales thresholds. Top energy officials from New York and Massachusetts are raising the fear that requiring increasing use of electric cars could impose financial hardships on poor people.

That is especially if utilities bear the cost of building out charging infrastructure and pass that onto ratepayers.

Those low-income communities are also unlikely to benefit initially from increasing access to charging stations because electric cars are out of their price range. Incentives and rebates offered for purchasing EVs, too, help the higher-income first buyer of the car, but those often don’t extend to the used car market. Massachusetts is looking at offering rebates for second-hand electric cars, a step New Jersey has already taken.

2. EV drivers don't pay any gas tax, which is literally highway robbery since the federal gas tax is supposed to pay for the Interstate Highway System. This includes road repairs.

However, utility companies are the one that benefit from drivers plugging in for energy are spending tens of millions of dollars on EV charging stations and billing the costs back to all ratepayers. And let's not forget, EV drivers don't pay any gas tax, which is literally highway robbery since the federal gas tax is supposed to pay for the Interstate Highway System.

A Congressional Research Service report found that 78% of the tax credit's recipients had an adjusted gross income of $100,000 per year or more. Who does all this hurt, you and I that average tax payer and strongly impacts low income Americans.

Some states are charging by-the-mile fees that cannot be evaded. Governments are planning to get you one way or the other.

3. Extending the tax credit and increasing the cap would be an economic and political loser.

Extending the tax credit would continue to take decision rights away from car buyers and perpetuate the federal government's authority to nudge consumers to use the technology or fuel source of its choice. Each time the government presses its thumbs on the scales of production and consumption, it disempowers car-buyers and obstructs innovation; in addition to having captive ratepayers cover the costs of recharging infrastructure through higher electricity bills for all ratepayers.

Polling consistently shows that EV subsidies are wildly unpopular, and the overwhelming majority of Americans don't even want to give a nickel to pay for someone else's car purchase. Extending the tax credit and increasing the cap would be an economic and political loser.

With the low prices of gasoline, consumers are buying pickup trucks and EVs. 

Lauren Fix, The Car Coach® is a nationally recognized automotive expert, media guest, journalist, author, keynote speaker and television host. Post your comments on Twitter: @LaurenFix or on her Facebook Page.
 

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LaurenFix
Polling consistently shows that EV subsidies are wildly unpopular, and the overwhelming majority of Americans don't even want to give a nickel to pay for someone else's car purchase.
government, force, buy, electric, vehicle
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2020-22-12
Friday, 12 June 2020 08:22 AM
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