Alex Goldmark is the senior producer of New Tech City, a storytelling show about how technology is changing society. Subscribe here to get New Tech City shows delivered right to your devices. Follow him on Twitter @alexgoldmark.
Should EV Owners Pay a Gas Tax Anyway?
Wednesday, February 09, 2011 - 10:17 PM
(Alex Goldmark, Transportation Nation) Washington State is looking to levy a special tax on eco-conscious car owners. Road maintenance is typically funded by a gas tax, both federal and local. So the prospect of a growing number of electric cars that wouldn't use gas at all is putting a little worry in the Washington state legislature.
The proposed tax would be $100 a year per electric car. According to The Seattle Times, Mary Margaret Haugen, the lead sponsor of the plan, said, "Electric cars will be driving on the highways right along with all the other cars. One of our biggest issues is preservation and maintenance of our existing highways. We believe they should be paying their fair share."
At an average of $12,000 miles per year and average fuel efficiency, The Times calculates that the average gas-consuming driver pays about $200 a year in gas tax.
Is this just fairness in public finance? Or disincentive for purchasing cleaner cars?
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