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Washington state wants to tax electric vehicles

An all-electric vehicle is exhibited in Santa Monica, Calif.

TEXT OF STORY

JEREMY HOBSON: New legislation in Washington state has electric vehicle enthusiasts all charged up. But not in a good way. The bill would tax EV drivers for the gasoline they don't use.

From the Sustainability Desk, Sarah Gardner reports.


SARAH GARDNER: Gasoline taxes pay for road maintenance and repair. But cash-poor states are beginning to worry about dwindling road funds as more drivers go electric. Today, a Washington state senate committee considers a bill that would make EV drivers pay $100 a year. That would make up for the gas taxes they won't pay.

Steven Lough is with the Seattle Electric Vehicle Association. He says any special fee on electric cars is just one more roadblock to their adoption.

STEVEN LOUGH: Some people are paying from $1,000 to $2,000 to have their garage wired up for these higher-powered charging infrastructures. Another $100, some people are going to say, forget it!

Lough's group may push instead for an electric car tax that's based on miles driven every year instead of a flat fee. That would probably end up costing EV drivers less.

I'm Sarah Gardner for Marketplace.

About the author

Sarah Gardner is a reporter on the Marketplace sustainability desk.

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