EV’s and Road Taxes

Several states around the nation have started creating legislation to put an extra registration tax on EV’s ( Electric Vehicles ). The main fuel being electricity, although many states are struggling with the road tax on Natural Gas vehicles.

While many of the solutions appear to be punitive and created to discourage EV use, many are actually trying to create an equitable system to insure all vehicles pay their fair share for maintaining public roads.

Instead of adding a tax for EV’s, my suggestion would be to eliminate all road taxes on fuel. There is substantial evidence that the fund created and funded by the gasoline tax, is only partly ( not mostly ) being used for roads. Politicians are always using money for things they weren’t intended for, and I suspect this fund is no exception. Just another revenue source. Let’s clarify for them.

Eliminate the tax on fuel. While they are at it, remove all taxpayer subsidy for vehicle fuels of all kinds. Offset that revenue source by the existing annual registration. Increase the annual registration to make up the difference and restrict the fund to be only used for roads, bridges, and like infrastructure. The amount will be computed on weight. If improving air quality is an issue, and it should be, take into account fuel efficiency and pollution generated.

The price of petroleum will increase. Heavy and destructive vehicles ( weight and pollution ) would become more expensive and those costs would have to be evaluated by the consumer, based on whatever value those vehicles are providing.

End any special emissions classification for Special Use Vehicles, if indeed we do still have more lenient pollution standards for certain class of vehicles. This would be more of a related fairness issue. Since a tax on weight and capacity would be equitable across the board.

When you go to renew your registration. You will be taxed on weight and carrying capacity. If pollution is important, include efficiency and emissions.

Granted, those that use the roads more will pay the same as those that use them less, for a given weight class. Perhaps buy a smaller lighter car if you don’t do much driving. Another solution would be payment based on miles driven. Certainly a last choice for those that value their privacy. Perhaps some would be willing to forgo that privacy in favor of a lower tax. I realize we already give the government our mileage when we get the vehicle inspected. Just whether you want to officially allow use of that piece of information. Assuming the government can be trusted, subject for another time. I suspect in another 10 years, where you go and which roads you use will be tabulated by the many many traffic detection systems we have. More so if your vehicle is part of the Internet Of Things.

Sound fair. Taxpayers no longer pay for what others choose to drive. Everybody pays for the infrastructure based on what damage their choices do.

I have no doubt that the system they come up with will be far from fair, reward all the wrong choices, and in some ways be really stupid. But, at least different ideas were out there.

I’m sure there are quite a few angles I have not considered. Just trying to get ideas on the fair way to pay for public roads. Ideas?