rmay635703
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:43 pm

Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 11:50 am

the republican Wisconsin legislators are once again making legislation to penalize hybrids, vehicles with start stop and plug ins; doubling or tripling the annual registration costs on these vehicles.

The law started as a $150 up charge for the 5000 BEVs in Wisconsin but every day gets changed to add more vehicles, last I saw it was reduced to $100 but is moving to become the "Prius tax" again.

An old version of the bill is here
2017 Assembly Bill 478

http://docs.legis.wisconsin.gov/2017/proposals/ab478

The earlier veto'd version of this bill was found by the former government revue board to loose money for 5 years because of the expense of identifying the cars, upgrading software, changing procedures, training and actually collecting the fee.

In any event the "epidemic" of a few thousand EVs loosing road revenue is really not the point of these laws.
Those that spearhead them draw the false conclusion that because EVs pay no gas tax, traditional economy cars like a Prius also pay little to no gas tax.

See this quote from David Prosser who is pushing this nonsense.

"Many people see plug-in hybrid cars and pure EVs as the wave of the future. Federal tax credits have been authorized to encourage EV purchases. The inevitable consequence is a decline in gas tax revenues. These revenues must be replaced because EVs and hybrids use the same highways as everyone else."
---

You notice he starts by singling out EVs and plug-ins for not paying their fair share, then conveniently eliminates the distinction with traditionals by lumping all in the term "hybrids" which becomes the target for the taxing legislation.

Our legislators then ecochamber this to spearhead the tax, usually with a lot of anger and emotional reasoning.

This ecochamber falls in line with the ALEC/Koch Conspiracy theory
That
would be suppression of purchases of plug-in hybrids and EVs. In any case, traditional hybrids are "collateral damage" because there are not yet enough plug-ins and EVs to make an argument to the public for collecting useful fractions of tax dollars

Even the sierra club is noticing this strange coincidence of talk radio driving legislation

http://www.sierraclub.org/compass/2017/02/flurry-state-bills-introduced-likely-backed-oil-industry-penalize-electric-car

This may seem counterintuitive, but "traditional" hybrid owners should raise a holy stink that they are being lumped in with plug-ins and EVs. While this appears to play in to the hands of folks that like to divide and conquer, like the WI governor and majority legislators, the only way to implement this punitive tax is to require the larger pool of traditionals to be lumped in with the minuscule number of EVs and plug-ins. If only EVs and plug-ins are in the pool, the punishment would be so severe that even the sleeping general public would take notice.

This is an argument why these vehicle specific fees are immoral

My 2001 Honda Insight hybrid (3cyl, 1L) averages 50MPG. A NON-hybrid Ford Fiesta SFE (3cyl, 1L) averages 35MPG. For 10,000 miles traveled, the Fiesta will use 286 gallons and the Insight, 200 gallons. The Fiesta owner will pay $88 in WI gas tax (at $0.309/gal), and, for the Insight, instead of paying "little to nothing", I'll pay $62.
Seems like I avoided all of $26 in gas tax.

But consider the owner of a new-technology, aluminum F150 pickup that averages 17MPG compared to the old-technology, non-aluminum F150 averaging 14MPG. For 10,000 miles traveled, the non-aluminum F150 will use 714 gallons, and the aluminum, 588 gallons. WI gas taxes for the non-aluminum version will be $221, and $182 for the aluminum, allowing the aluminum version owner to avoid $39 of gas tax.
This is obvious, simple math.
But under the hybrid tax legislation, I will be charged a $75 penalty for not paying my $26 "fair share", while F150 owners, and there are a lot of them, will be charged nothing for avoiding $39.
Singling out hybrid technology by name for punitive taxation is legislatively picking winners and losers, as much as it would be to have a special tax for aluminum bodied vehicles.
It is indefensible, unfair, and, eventually, unworkable.

And
I didn't even get into the 1 billion dollar question, our state has less than 5% hybrids, mathematically the tax won't make a dent.

Add to this the DMV looses 50% + of fees collected to administrative costs (on a good day)
Gas tax is 98% efficient at getting funds to the government coffer, a modern success story.

If they want more funding for roads there are better ways of getting the 1 billion revenue that doesnt just affect 50,000 cars out of 9 million on the road here.

My opposition has nothing to do with gas tax funding or even paying "my fair share" it has everything to do with opposing a winner loser type of politics, where decisions are made emotionally to support special interests.

There may not be much our community can do to stop this in states that are leaning toward or are already punishing efficiency. But it can't hurt to make a stink!

Jedlacks
Posts: 149
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Delivery Date: 29 May 2016
Location: Kennesaw, GA

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 12:32 pm

I live in Georgia that has the $200+ tax. I'll gladly pay it for not going to the gas station, ever, while driving in excess of 19,000 miles a year. If we do the math and the tax is increased to where the costs are a "wash", then I have to calculate my inconvenience fee. We have a long way to go for that to happen. Regarding Wisconsin, it will suit you if the tax is applied to more and more people, because the one thing that Americans hate is taxes. People win and lose elections on that three letter word!
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sandeen
Posts: 120
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Location: Minnesota

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 4:49 pm

We got a $75 tax in Minnesota this year, only on pure electric vehicles. This despite a study demonstrating that electric vehicles already pay a higher than average road tax based on all tax sources - sales tax, tab renewal fees, and gasoline tax.
I wish they'd just go to a weight & mileage tax; you could self-report mileage when you renew tabs, and true up when you sell or salvage the car, with a penalty at the end if there's a large discrepancy at the end of ownership. Seems like that would be fairest in terms of who is [ab]using the roads.
2012 SL from TX, (mfg 8/12), used, dropped to 8 bars at 43.50 Ahr, 40,601 miles. my daily stats =/= my collected data on 4-bar losers

rmay635703
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:43 pm

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:35 pm

Jedlacks wrote:I live in Georgia that has the $200+ tax. I'll gladly pay it for not going to the gas station. People win and lose elections on that three letter word!


gotcha, I'm so used to the pay your fair share comments I'm a little touchie on the subject

Sorry
Last edited by rmay635703 on Sun Sep 10, 2017 7:12 pm, edited 1 time in total.

Jedlacks
Posts: 149
Joined: Sun Dec 14, 2014 12:10 pm
Delivery Date: 29 May 2016
Location: Kennesaw, GA

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 6:53 pm

And you missed my point, but you are the OP so carry on...
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Juicebox 40A

rmay635703
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:43 pm

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 7:07 pm

Jedlacks wrote:And you missed my point, but you are the OP so carry on...

Gotcha, ;) sorry about that but most hybrid owners here don't seem to care.

Once the law is passed if people then react it will be too late, it's a rare sight that a tax is repealed once on the books.

Meanwhile I'm trying to get something in another local paper so hopefully folks get a little more riled up.

DarthPuppy
Posts: 483
Joined: Sun Aug 11, 2013 8:45 pm
Delivery Date: 11 Aug 2013

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Sun Sep 10, 2017 10:34 pm

Sadly, taxes almost always expand. They start small and then get larger. They start only impacting a few but then spread to hit more. There was a time when there weren't gas taxes above and beyond the normal sales tax. Guess what? The roads in many places were better than they are now after billions (maybe trillions) have been collected to take care of the roads. (Or is this strong funding and lack of actual results only a California problem?)

As I see it, it is just another bait and switch to slip in more taxes to fuel more wasteful spending. The rationale being used to pitch the deal and get it passed is irrelevant. Whoever is in charge at the moment, whether Democrats or Republicans merely shift back and forth who the increases hit at the time.

I do concur that the gas tax is far more efficient at providing the politicians with their monopoly money to play with. And that would have the benefit of encouraging more BEV/hybrid sales which will benefit the environment and society in the long run. I'm disappointed this stuff has to get caught up in the politics.

rmay635703
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:43 pm

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Mon Sep 11, 2017 3:31 am

What is happening in Wisconsin will likely be the end result of all BEV taxes in all states.

I look at who is lobbying the government for the tax and in this case ALL states that now have the tax were lobbied by the same strongly anti EV group.

The words in those laws are irrelevant, the intent of the lobby pushing it is and that is why all BEV
taxes should be strongly opposed and shelved until a more balanced group can evaluate them.

These laws have nothing to do with fair share.

The intent of those pushing the law is very punitive and that must always be stated first.

First they went after a stranger and I didn't care, then they went after a neighbor and I was worried, now they went after me.

Zythryn
Posts: 946
Joined: Fri Jun 04, 2010 4:49 am

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Mon Sep 11, 2017 5:08 am

States are trying to get out in front of the EV wave. I don't blame them for that.
However, their logic is faulty, and their methods are very wrong.

EVs help the bottom line, as owners (at least in most of the US) spend more money to spend locally.

Next, the method is not only unfair, I believe it wouldn't stand up in court.
The gas tax is used as a proxy for weight and miles driven. Both of those factors are taken out of the equation with this flat fee.
My neighbor may drive far more, in the same weight vehicle, but pay less than I.
Also, while this proxy may have worked fairly well back in the 50s, it is getting less and less accurate.

In addition, years ago incentivizing fuel efficient vehicles was seen as a goal, this eliminates that.

If they want to eliminate the at the pump gas tax and replace it with an annual fee that would be fair, but disastrous.
If they add a sliding scale fee based on miles driven as well as weight, that would be much more equitable.
Previous owner of Prius, Volt & Leaf
Current owner of Model S
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rmay635703
Posts: 419
Joined: Wed Jan 19, 2011 7:43 pm

Re: Wisconsin converting EV tax into Economy car tax

Fri Sep 22, 2017 1:59 pm

Law is passed BEV registration fees tripling
hybrids doubling

Plus throw in car specific wheel taxes and you have an unacceptable situation

my EV might have to go.
Last edited by rmay635703 on Fri Sep 22, 2017 8:29 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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