General Motors has no issues with the idea of better roads for Michigan, but when it comes to a special plug-in vehicle tax enacted to help pay for those repairs, the automaker is crying foul, Automotive News says.
States and municipalities are getting creative as they look for ways to raise tax revenues from electric cars. More and more plug-in vehicles are on the roads each year, and as gasoline-engine vehicles become more fuel efficient, there's simply less fuel tax revenue coming in. New Jersey is considering a tax scheme that will seem more reasonable to some and unfair to others.
In a move likely to cause an uproar across Portland-area coffeehouses, Oregon's state legislature is again considering instituting a per-mile tax on super-fuel-efficient cars and electric vehicles. The state is looking to recuperate revenue lost because more fuel efficient vehicles on the road result in fewer dollars being collected from gas taxes.
In some ways, taxing people for the miles they drive makes sense. After all, we need money to keep roads in good shape and it already happens today, indirectly, through gasoline taxes. But when anyone talks about taxing the miles directly – i.e., through a mileage or "vehicle miles traveled" tax – hackles get raised.
The Minnesota Department of Transportation (MN-DOT) is looking to recruit 500 residents of Wright and Hennepin counties to test technology that could eventually be used to collect a mileage-based user fee (MBUF) in lieu of the state's gasoline tax. Cory Johnson, MN-DOT project manager, claims that:
When gas prices rose in 2008, one of the few bits of good news was that the federal government was bumping up the business mileage deduction to 55 cents per mile. Now that gas prices have stabilized in 2009, the Internal Revenue Service has reportedly decided to cut back on some of its generosity. According to Wallet Pop, the new per mile rate is 50 cents, a nine percent decline from a year ago. The decrease will likely do little to the casual business traveler, but high mileage sales types and
A mileage tax has been in discussion here in the U.S., but doesn't look likley to become law. The situation is very different in the Netherlands, where the Dutch cabinet approved legislation that would replace ownership and sales taxes on automobiles with a 3 Euro cent (about 4.5 U.S. cents) fee per kilometer starting in 2012. The next step is for Parliament to pass the law, something that is very likely. If approved, the fee would climb to 6.7 Euro cents (10 U.S. cents) in 2018. What's the poin
The idea of paying for your insurance by the mile is not new. MileMeter, in Texas, offers pay-as-you-drive (PAYD) rates and California has been using mileage brackets to set insurance rates for years. A new, more precise PAYD system is under discussion in California that would give people who drive less a financial incentive to do keep doing so – and maybe convince people on the fence to find an alternative when possible.
Earlier this year, new Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood (R) briefly flirted with the idea of a mileage tax, where drivers would pay based on how far they drive. Briefly. Later, the State of Oregon released a study that found a way to "successfully" implement a mileage tax - GPS units and a wireless communicataion system at the pump were two key components - but this didn't address the big problem with a mileage tax: it removes any tax-based incentive to consume less fuel (a gas tax, on the ot
Earlier this year, Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood briefly became an Internet comment piñata by suggesting the U.S. think about instituting a mileage tax. The idea went nowhere, but this doesn't mean that a mileage tax is unworkable anywhere. In fact, Oregon began considering a mileage tax at least as far back as 2001 and started working with 300 mileage tax-paying volunteers in 2006 (see this 2007 post and Oregon's 2007 PDF report for more). "Oregon's successful experiment with a mil
Over the weekend, we heard that the new Transportation Secretary, Ray LaHood (R), was considering implementing a tax on the number of miles people drive each year to raise the funds for road infrastructure. The idea was solidly rejected by our readers - and very quickly by the Obama Administration. One problem with a mileage tax, as Green Car Advisor points out, is that there is then no tax-based incentive to use less fuel. As the Washingto Post reports, the idea was pretty short-lived, with Whi
For years, the federal gas tax has funded the development, repair and improvement of our nation's highways, but for the last few years, there has been an ongoing debate about whether it's a better idea to tax drivers based on the number of miles traveled or to continue taxing the purchase of fuel.
Massachusetts Governor Deval Patrick (D) is said to be considering adjusting registration fees skyward for large, gas-guzzling vehicles while discounting the same for fuel-saving models. The controversial legislation has earned the nickname "Hummer Tax" since it is rather obviously geared towards large SUVs like those sold by GM's struggling HUMMER division.
Oregon ran a pilot program in 2006 and 2007 that fitted 300 cars with GPS receivers, which kept track of the cars' mileage. The receivers also kept records of when the cars were on the road, noting whether they traveled during rush hour or not. When the drivers went to several specially-equipped gas stations, they paid a mileage tax based on how far they had driven and when they drove, rush hour being more expensive than the wee hours.
The gasoline tax has long been the method of choice for raising money for public road upkeep, but more fuel efficient cars are slowly eroding funds from the public coffers. Oregon Governor Ted Kulongoski wants to keep road repair money flowing, so he's proposing the dreaded mileage tax. Opponents of the idea see a GPS-based solution as being an invasion of privacy, giving the government the ability to track where tax-payers go. However, the proposed system in Oregon doesn't track any travel poin
According to James Ray, Acting Administrator of the Federal Highway Administration, the current system of deriving money for the upkeep of the nations roadways is "unpredictable and unsustainable." He adds, "Without a doubt, our federal approach to transportation is broken, and no amount of tweaking, adjusting or adding new layers on top will make things better." This view is understandable in the wake of record high gas prices, which are causing consumers to drive less and therefore produce les