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California will add EV fees for 2020 model year

Golden State has the largest US contingent of plug-in vehicle owners

California is joining a growing list of states that will charge extra fees to drivers of battery electric and plug-in hybrid vehicles in order to generate revenue that would've otherwise come from gasoline taxes. The Golden State, which easily has the country's largest contingent of plug-in vehicle owners, will charge a one-time registration fee of $100 for plug-in vehicles starting in the 2020 model year. The fees are part of a bill approved last week that is slated to generate more than $52 billion over 10 years, and will chip away at a backlog of repairs estimated to cost about $130 billion.

In addition to the one-time fees, the state will enact annual registration fees that will range from $25 for plug-ins with market values of less than $5,000, to $175 for plug-in vehicles that are worth at least $60,000 (we'll call that the Tesla Class). To be fair (to green car advocates, at least), California will also boost its gas tax 43 percent to 30 cents a gallon starting in November. California has at various times been estimated to account for about half of the country's plug-in vehicle sales. Take a look at the bill, which was introduced last December, here.

With US plug-in vehicle sales continuing to rise, more states are adopting plug-in vehicle fees to help pay for road repairs and other infrastructure. Nebraska and Missouri were the first, enacting $75 in additional annual fees for plug-in vehicles starting in 2011. Since then, Colorado, Idaho, Georgia, North Carolina, Michigan, Virginia, Washington, and Wyoming have joined that fray, according to Green Car Reports. And this year, six other states, including Kansas, South Carolina, and Tennessee, have proposed similar bills.

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