Texas electric vehicle owners would have to pay $200 annual fees in proposed legislation
Texas electric vehicle owners might have to pay $200 in annual fees under a bill recently sent to GOP Gov. Greg Abbott’s desk.
According to the authors of the bill, the fees are necessary in order to make electric vehicles (EV) pay their fair share of highway costs.
The Texas House passed the bill on Thursday, 145-0. It had already passed in the Senate in March.
Senate Transportation Committee Chairman Robert Nichols argued that motor-fuel taxes pay for a significant portion of the state road system, which EV’s don’t pay.
San Antonio founder and director of Texans Uniting for Freedom and Reform Terri Hall spoke in favor of Nichols’ bill.
“We’re trying to come up with a way to help capture some of that road usage from EVs, especially since there’s been such a push for EVs and we’re seeing a lot more,” she said in an interview, according to the Dallas Morning News.
Consumer Reports policy analyst Dylan Jaff opposed Nichols’ bill, arguing that gas taxes account for just 29% of Texas highway funds.
“The primary cause of the road funding shortfall in Texas has nothing to do with EVs, but rather with the fact that Texas has not increased their gas tax since 1991,” Jaff said in a memo.
He further argued that “Consumers should not be punished for choosing a cleaner, greener car that saves them money on fuel and maintenance,” according to Fox Business.