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Gov. Bob McDonnell  (Source:
The fee is meant to replace the state's gas tax

Drivers of hybrid and electric vehicles protested a proposed transportation plan in the state of Virginia, which would charge them $100 per year.

The $3.1 billion transportation plan, which was proposed by Gov. Bob McDonnell, would eliminate Virginia's gas tax entirely. However, drivers of hybrid and electric vehicles would have to pay an annual fee of $100 to make up for it.

"It's meant to compensate for the federal gas tax that those vehicles do not pay," said McDonnell.

However, hybrid and electric vehicle drivers feel that this plan thwarts progress in the area of clean vehicles rather than encourages it. Some drivers have even called the fee a "punishment."

"We should be rewarding people for trying to do their part to stop the climate crisis and to lower pollution," said Beth Kemler, who attended the protest. "We shouldn't be punishing them with taxes."

In other U.S. states, such as California, residents are awarded for making green auto choices. California residents can save as much as $13,000 on the purchase of an electric vehicle through the use of tax rebates/credits.

Source: WTOP

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RE: Diesels
By Mint on 2/4/2013 9:17:44 PM , Rating: 2
Read the points above. Roads don't get worn out significantly by EVs or gas cars. They get worn out by heavy trucks. Some studies estimate a factor of 10000x for the damage done by a loaded 18-wheeler vs a sedan, yet the Truck only consumes 5x the fuel (and thus only 5x the taxes).

Imagine if you paid $100 per year for garbage disposal, while the company down the street paid $500, but generated 10,000 times the garbage. If your neighbor got his garbage disposal for free, it'd dumb to be mad that your fee is subsidizing his free disposal. Instead, you should be arguing that the company should pay $599.88 while you and your neighbor pay $0.06, which is pretty much identical to the company footing the entire bill.

99.99% of the fuel tax that you pay isn't subsidizing EVs. It's subsidizing transport companies.

RE: Diesels
By JediJeb on 2/4/2013 10:47:10 PM , Rating: 2
The "Heavy Vehicle Use Tax" has already been implemented for just that problem, to level the field between light cars and heavy trucks.

Aside from the extra federal tax charged to heavy vehicles many states also add extra taxes on heavy vehicles. Add to that the fact that (as of 2010, most recent rates I found) gasoline is taxed at 18.4 cents per gallon versus 24.4 cents per gallon for diesel and the fact that the average semi under normal operating conditions gets 6.5mpg, I believe the discrepancy is lower than many people think.

Add to that the tire taxes

For most radial truck tires:
FET = ((Max. single load capacity in pounds-3,500)÷10)x$0.09450

This means that for every pound over 3500 on the load limit of the tire the tax increases and since it applies only to tires used on commercial vehicles it doesn't get charged to normal passenger vehicles. This was another tax added to heavy vehicles for the purpose of making up for the difference in highway wear due to higher weights.

Heavy trucks are not getting away with paying that much less taxes versus the amount of wear and tear they do on the highways, this has already been assumed and taxes added to help make up the difference. You can't only look at fuel taxes, you have to look at the whole tax package.

RE: Diesels
By Strunf on 2/5/2013 7:45:28 AM , Rating: 2
I doubt your 10000x figure, a truck may be heavier but it also as many more wheels and the wheels are much bigger, if you calculate the weight a truck and divide by the surface of contact with the road the difference wont be that big compared to a sedan, it's like comparing the impact on the soil by an elephant and a women wearing high heels.

Another point is that heavy trucks don't use all the roads, they use mostly the big axes and that probably isn't a big percentage of the total road length.

RE: Diesels
By johnsmith9875 on 2/5/2013 3:15:05 PM , Rating: 2
I disagree. Trucks do damage roads. Look at any roads at intersections leading up to a truck stop and you will see the asphalt has deep grooves in it due to the weight of the trucks driving on it.

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