Tax hybrids to pay for lost revenue?

Tax buyers of hybrid vehicles to make up for the revenue (from gas and diesel taxes) lost by the state?

That’s the reasoning behind an unsubstantiated report found in the Alabama news source, the Cullman Times. But it reflects a concern over the effects of hybrid vehicles on government coffers. According to the U.S. Energy Information Administration, twenty percent of the price for each gallon of gas is directed towards taxes. That can equate to a good-sized chunk of change lost on such vehicles as the new Civic hybrid, which sips less fuel than its gas-powered counterpart and therefore requires less gallons of taxable gas to keep going.

Such taxes (called disincentives) as well as “pay by miles driven” programs are being considered in state legislatures such as California (where hybrids are very popular) and Oregon.

And Alabama? State officials deny such reports. Says Representative Jeremy Oden: "They're (hybrid cars) really not prolific enough in Alabama to impact our tax structure much. I don't know of anything concerning hybrid cars being talked about right now."

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