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Tell Gov. Bob To Veto The Hybrid Tax

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Delegate Scott Surovell and Senator Adam Ebbin (D-Awesomeness) have created a petition to urge Governor McDonnell to “Veto the Hybrid Tax”!  The immediate goal is to get the governor to use his line item veto to remove this anti-clean energy provision from the transportation bill.

Whether this works or not, keep in mind the equally important goal of demonstrating the power of those who support clean energy and sustainability policy — of which Virginia remains one of the most backward states, and not getting any better.  Unless we speak up now, we — and future generations — will continue to be ignored.

As Del. Surovell summarizes the reasons to kill the green car tax, in an email to supporters

This is bad policy.

The Hybrid Tax punishes saving energy. Virginia needs to create incentives to encourage energy conservation so America can be energy independent. Most states are giving tax credits for hybrid purchases, not punishing owners.

The Hybrid Tax is a punitive tax.  The typical hybrid vehicle saves less than $35 per year in gas taxes – a $100 annual fee has no relationship to anything.  

The Hybrid Tax is unfair.  There are many non-hybrid vehicles that get better MPG than hybrids.  They don’t pay the tax.  This indiscriminately picks on one technology.

Hybrid owners already pay their fair share.  Hybrids already cost 10% more than other cars and there is no personal property tax phaseout for vehicles worth more than $20,000.  

The Hybrid Tax will barely generate revenue.  There are only 92,000 hybrids in Virginia – 1.3% of the entire vehicle fleet.  

The Hybrid Tax picks on Northern Virginia.  83% of Virginia clean fuel plates are registered in Northern Virginia.  This is one more example of Northern Virginia being used as a statewide piggy bank.

I like the spirit of these guys, fighting well into overtime for what’s right.  Please take just a minute to join them and add your name to the list.  

  • HarperJ

    It seems one hell of a lot more likely that he’ll line item the diesel tax than the hybrid tax.

    Hybrid drivers are the antithesis McD’s constituency.  Unlike hybrid drivers, the trucking and construction lobby can bring money to this fight. He might want to just harmonize diesel with the gasoline tax, though it’s doubtful he could pull that off with a line item.

    It’s possible he strikes both, but if McD does nix the hybrid tax it can only be because he’s heavily courting NoVa voters…  Why would he do that?  Have his people conned him into thinking he truly has a chance against Warner?  

    Taking on Warner is a likely career killer.  Though really, what other choice does he have?  5 years in the wilderness, then pop up to fight Kaine, or right into the wood chipper against Warner? No guts, no glory.

  • I just did a simple Excel spreadsheet which shows the following result:

    Miles 15,000  15,000 15,000

    MPG 40  30     20

    Gallons 375  500        750

    $/gal $3.75  $3.75        $3.75

    Cost/yr $1,406.25 $1,875.00 $2,812.50

    Also see this helpful chart.

    At $3.80 per gallon, if your car averages 41 MGP (like a Prius does, approximately), it costs you about $1,391 a year in gas. If your car averages 23 MPG (like an SUV does), it costs you about $2,481 a year in gas.  

    So, the savings between driving a Prius 15,000 miles a year and driving an SUV 15,000 miles a year is something like $1,100 a year. The hybrid fee eats up $100 of that (although only $50 of that is an increase, right?).

  • pashin

    If the difference is $22 at 17 cents a gallon, at the 12 cents I’ve heard estimated for the wholesale tax, the “tax break” for hybrid owners would drop to about $16.  

    But this is the kind of hippie-bashing that Rethugs love, so I agree with HarperJ that  McD is unlikely to veto it. No reason not to make a political statement with the petition, however.   And all the more reason to vote for a Democratic governor, Lt. Gov, AG, and HoD this year.  This goes on the list of things to fix whenever we take the state back.