tkdbrusco
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 10:27 am

smkettner wrote:
tkdbrusco wrote:Any fee on EVs is completely ridiculous until the state stops funding or runs out of funds for the state rebate on purchases of electric vehicles. How do you simultaneously give someone a rebate funding by taxes and then add an annual tax to the same vehicle?! Are our politicians really this big of idiots? Is government really this stupid? Yes I think so.
If the $2,500 comes from the general fund and the $165 actually goes toward roads it is completely reasonable.
The $2,500 can end any time. The $165 will only escalate. For the consumer they are ahead for the life of the vehicle.
Are you really about to tell me that because one of them comes from one fund and the other comes from someplace else that it makes any difference? Who cares where the line item is in the budget, they both come from one place.... my taxes!
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fooljoe
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 10:41 am

tkdbrusco wrote:Who cares where the line item is in the budget, they both come from one place.... my taxes!
Exactly! The idea of dedicating tax revenues to specific expenditures exists solely to sway the public into accepting a tax, and in practice usually has no bearing on the funding levels of the target expenditures. What does matter about tax policy is the effect it has on markets, and with the EV market as weak as it's ever been with today's ridiculously low gas prices, the last thing we need is a new tax that penalizes EV ownership.
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tkdbrusco
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 2:57 pm

fooljoe wrote:
tkdbrusco wrote:Who cares where the line item is in the budget, they both come from one place.... my taxes!
Exactly! The idea of dedicating tax revenues to specific expenditures exists solely to sway the public into accepting a tax, and in practice usually has no bearing on the funding levels of the target expenditures. What does matter about tax policy is the effect it has on markets, and with the EV market as weak as it's ever been with today's ridiculously low gas prices, the last thing we need is a new tax that penalizes EV ownership.
Don't get me wrong. I'm a Republican, probably one of a handful on this site, and one of the main reasons I bought my Leaf was that with all of the rebates and credits, it was an extremely cheap car. I probably would have broke even on the deal if gas prices hadn't hit a downward spiral, but even with that, I'll still be better off than any ICE alternative. That being said, I am now 100% convinced that EVs are superior products and even agree that government subsidies were a good move in pushing the technology forward. I think that we are almost at a point where some of the rebates will not be necessary to drive sales, especially with 200+ mi EVs in the pipeline. What I actually think is going to be worst will be when Chevy, Nissan, and Tesla run out of the $7500 federal credits because they've hit the 200K production numbers, meanwhile other manufactures will be able to swoop in and offer these credits even though they were last to the party. I don't think that the trailblazers should be able to be shoved aside when they forged the path in the first place. I also think that there should be some rebate/credit for replacement batteries on early EVs, otherwise you'll find a lot of these cars useless for anything other than grocery store runs, and there's no environmental benefit to a Leaf in a junk yard at 100K miles, when an ICE car goes to 200K plus before being put out of service.
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Nubo
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 3:26 pm

fooljoe wrote:... should we somehow treat the military as a "pay per use" system?
Now, that could solve a multitude of problems.
I noticed you're still working with polymers.

fooljoe
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 3:33 pm

tkdbrusco wrote:What I actually think is going to be worst will be when Chevy, Nissan, and Tesla run out of the $7500 federal credits because they've hit the 200K production numbers, meanwhile other manufactures will be able to swoop in and offer these credits even though they were last to the party. I don't think that the trailblazers should be able to be shoved aside when they forged the path in the first place.
Definitely. The idiocy that is the structure of the EV tax credit deserves its own thread. Were there any semblance of reason remaining in congress I might hold out hope that that mess could get fixed before the "good guys" like Nissan and Tesla start getting penalized, but sadly we're probably stuck with the law as it is.
I also think that there should be some rebate/credit for replacement batteries on early EVs, otherwise you'll find a lot of these cars useless for anything other than grocery store runs, and there's no environmental benefit to a Leaf in a junk yard at 100K miles, when an ICE car goes to 200K plus before being put out of service.
Not to mention that now it might cost you an extra $165/year for that old EV that's only good for grocery store runs! AB1591 should be named the "Junk Your EVs Act".
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jpadc
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 5:06 pm

fooljoe wrote:The idea of dedicating tax revenues to specific expenditures exists solely to sway the public into accepting a tax, and in practice usually has no bearing on the funding levels of the target expenditures.
True enough, but if the expenditures fall woefully short of the revenue collected for something, the people are likely to (and should) take that out on their elected officials. As for roads in CA, I don't drive them but everyone here who does says there in bad shape (as there are everywhere in the country frankly) and because tax collection revenues to fix them don't exist, they either need more money or to decide to just let them deteriorate more and more. If you don't like the roads crumbling, the question then because where to get the funds. If the State get is by raising sales taxes or income taxes or any other tax that everybody pays, that's good right?
fooljoe wrote:What does matter about tax policy is the effect it has on markets, and with the EV market as weak as it's ever been with today's ridiculously low gas prices, the last thing we need is a new tax that penalizes EV ownership.
So as long as the tax increase is not directed at EV ownership, but a more general tax increase for everyone, you're all good with it, right?
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abasile
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 5:51 pm

fooljoe wrote:
tkdbrusco wrote:I also think that there should be some rebate/credit for replacement batteries on early EVs, otherwise you'll find a lot of these cars useless for anything other than grocery store runs, and there's no environmental benefit to a Leaf in a junk yard at 100K miles, when an ICE car goes to 200K plus before being put out of service.
Not to mention that now it might cost you an extra $165/year for that old EV that's only good for grocery store runs! AB1591 should be named the "Junk Your EVs Act".
As to rebates on replacement batteries, I wouldn't object, but on the other hand, I'm mostly fine with simply letting the market de-value EVs with lousy batteries. If EV manufacturer A makes battery packs that tend to degrade quickly while manufacturer B makes more robust, longer lasting packs with more range, then market forces will reward B while penalizing A. Over time, this will lead to the production of more EVs with robust batteries. (Notice that sales of the Tesla Model S have been competitive with the LEAF's numbers, in spite of Tesla's much higher price.)

Further, I believe that older, drivable, limited range EVs will eventually find their way to drivers with suitable use cases if they are priced low enough, i.e., at true market prices. For someone on a low budget who primarily just needs to get around a medium sized city, a really cheap, old LEAF with 40-50 miles of range could be a great match.

I do agree, though, that $165/year is a bit much for an older LEAF that can't go very far on a charge. In any case, I'm against any new fees on EVs until fossil fuels are priced according to their true costs to humanity.
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fooljoe
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 6:21 pm

jpadc wrote:True enough, but if the expenditures fall woefully short of the revenue collected for something, the people are likely to (and should) take that out on their elected officials.
It's the other way around - the "issue" is the revenue collected from gas taxes is woefully short of the expenditures, so the difference is made up with the general fund. Although I wouldn't really say that it's an issue at all, as any planner with half a brain would know that the revenue from any excise tax (like the gas tax) would naturally fall over time and can't be relied upon to support an expenditure which will only rise over time.

You're absolutely correct that the people should take out their frustration on their elected officials - those officials should responsibly allocate money from the general fund for high priority needs like infrastructure (that's their job after all.) However, the invention of these "dedicated tax revenues" results in quite the opposite: When money for infrastructure falls short the people direct their frustration at "freeloading EV drivers" rather than politicians.
As for roads in CA, I don't drive them but everyone here who does says there in bad shape (as there are everywhere in the country frankly) and because tax collection revenues to fix them don't exist, they either need more money or to decide to just let them deteriorate more and more. If you don't like the roads crumbling, the question then because where to get the funds. If the State get is by raising sales taxes or income taxes or any other tax that everybody pays, that's good right?
The California budget is actually in great shape right now - we don't have any need for new taxation. However, if there were a shortfall, then you're correct that any and all types of revenue generating schemes should be considered.There's no reason at all to link infrastructure spending to infrastructure users. In my opinion, if new taxation is needed it would make more sense to first go after the top earners, with for example income taxes or property taxes. Things like vehicle registration taxes and sales taxes are regressive - they disproportionately affect the poor, and they stymie consumer spending by making purchases more expensive. The gas tax is also regressive, but I'd say it should be maintained or increased in order to discourage consumption, since producing and burning gas has so many known deleterious effects. But the revenues from it should just go into the general fund like any other tax and not be tied to any specific expenditures.
So as long as the tax increase is not directed at EV ownership, but a more general tax increase for everyone, you're all good with it, right?
Aside from the above rant on regressive taxes, sure. But again, it's really hard to justify any sort of new tax in California in the midst of a huge budget surplus. :roll:
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jpadc
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Wed Jan 27, 2016 6:48 pm

fooljoe wrote:But again, it's really hard to justify any sort of new tax in California in the midst of a huge budget surplus. :roll:
Well, not counting all those unfunded liabilities but CA is certainly not alone (nor even on top) in the "let's ignore how deeply in debt we are" contest.
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TimLee
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Re: CA - AB1591 - $165 flat fee for zero-emission vehicles

Thu Jan 28, 2016 4:18 am

fooljoe wrote:There's no reason at all to link infrastructure spending to infrastructure users. In my opinion, if new taxation is needed it would make more sense to first go after the top earners, with for example income taxes or property taxes. Things like vehicle registration taxes and sales taxes are regressive - they disproportionately affect the poor, and they stymie consumer spending by making purchases more expensive. The gas tax is also regressive, but I'd say it should be maintained or increased in order to discourage consumption, since producing and burning gas has so many known deleterious effects. But the revenues from it should just go into the general fund like any other tax and not be tied to any specific expenditures.
Why not?
The tax on fossil fuels on a per gallon basis was actually one of the more intelligently designed tax mechanisms.
It did have shortcomings in that it was regressive on the lower income persons driving older less efficient vehicles.
But it appropriately taxed Hummer drivers more.
It never taxed large trucks appropriately based on their damage to the infrastructure.
And as vehicles became more efficient, revenue fell as it was not indexed to the ongoing need for infrastructure msintensnce funding.
So it had some shortcomings.

But to say everything should all come out of general revenue is a stupid idea.

Yes there are things like mass transit that are the smart intelligent thing to do that will never be able to pay their way based on use taxes, but to abandon pay based on use taxes for barges and vehicles completely is a stupid idea.

Tim Lee
Chattanooga, TN

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