California May Give Electric Car Owners Even More Taxpayer Cash

teslaCalifornia residents may soon be shelling out more taxpayer money to help prop up the state’s electric vehicle industry.

As Congress debates whether or not to increase federal subsidies for electric cars, California officials say they are ready to “make up” the difference if they don’t. Currently, the state offers $2,500 for every pure electric vehicle sold in the state. The California Air and Resources Board will hold hearings on Thursday and Friday to decide on possibly increasing this rate to $4,500 if Washington, D.C. does not lift their own caps.

The federal government offers tax credits up to $7,500 to electric vehicle (EVs) buyers. However, this credit caps off at 200,000 cars sold per manufacturer. Tesla has already surpassed this threshold and GM is not far off. Some lawmakers and EV supporters have proposed raising the limit to keep incentivizing people to buy the green — but very expensive — cars.

Mary Nichols, the chair of California’s Air Resources Board, is hopeful federal lawmakers will raise the threshold, but she said “we would be having to look at another way to make up for that” if they don’t.

Consideration of more EV subsidies comes as California continues to adopt more environmentally measures. Outgoing Democratic Gov. Jerry Brown signed legislation earlier this month that mandates the state’s generation industry produce 100 percent carbon-free electricity by 2045. The California Energy Commission voted in May to require every new house in the state to include solar panel installation, despite the expected increase in cost for prospective home buyers.

California officials are also in a heated battle with the Trump administration over its authority to regulate emissions standards. The White House is mulling whether to freeze fuel efficiency standards at 37 miles per gallon in 2020 — in lieu of raising the standards to 47 mpg by 2025, as was previously established during the Obama administration. Under the Clean Air Act, California is able to set their own, more strict emissions standards. The Trump administration is looking to rescind this authority.

“At the end of the day, California officials looked at the data, came to a different conclusion than Trump, and are proceeding with the authority they already have under the Clean Air Act,” stated Don Anair, the research director for clean cars at the Union of Concerned Scientists, according to Bloomberg.

Pacific Gas and Electric Company (PG&E), the state’s largest electric utility, has been a vocal supporter of raising electric vehicle subsidies, indicating that they plan to spend hundreds of million on EV infrastructure and want to see satisfactory returns on its investments. Ratepayer-funded  charging stations serve as a new source of revenue for utility companies.

This article was originally published by the Daily Caller News Foundation

Comments

  1. PG&E may not survive a coming ratepayer revolt.

    Think people are ticked at gas taxes? How do you think they feel about Gov Brown forcing us to bail them out for their negligence?

    I’m a big proponent of forcing the CA state legislature to have to do a cost/benefit analysis for their legislation.Just how much does it cost to be 100% carbon neutral?
    Today the answer is undefined because the technology does not exist.

  2. Andrew Kessel says

    CA contributes maybe 1% of the world’s carbon emissions, but Captain Moonbeam will stop the rest? Ontario knows Cap & Trade is a farce….

  3. My uncle Louie jammed two D batteries up his kazokas and says he now identifies as a Buick. The state of California sent him a check for 87 dollars last month.

  4. Still think we should designate the 2500 acre ranch in NorCal that Captain Moonbeams owns as a Homeless Sanctuary. Since he has caused most of the recent homelessness, he should open up his retirement ranch!

  5. Another pay off to the left coast liberals who support Brown and his socialist agenda.
    Elec. cars are expensive and only the wealthy or ego hogs can or will purchase them (those that live on our expensive coast line!). These subsidizes are how Brown pays them back for political cash donations. You see it’s cheaper for Brown to use tax revenue instead of his own money! These folks don’t pay the gas tax but get a break on everything else. The guy who can only afford a 3 year old car has to refinance his mortgage to keep even!

  6. Peter Miller says

    Although I despise the People’s Republic of CA socialist government, this article is completely misleading.

    How is ‘tax credit’ a subsidy?!
    The only way you can get this credit is to have your tax liability at least same or higher that this tax credit. Only then you are able to subtract it from YOUR tax liability.
    It is similar to be able to subtract your mortgage interest payment from your taxable income, yet no one is talking about housing mortgage ‘subsidy’ because it is NOT a subsidy.

    Besides, forget the CO2 lies, look at the amount of brown smog we are all breathing in large metro areas.

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