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Hybrid Taxes

It wasn’t too many years ago when cities were giving free parking and tax incentives to people who drove and or purchased hybrids. I was recently in Seattle and it seems that every taxi is a Prius hybrid; however, I heard that the legislature has decided that the hybrid owners don’t pay enough fuel tax, so now there is a move to put an extra tax of some sort on the existing and future hybrid owners. As a hybrid owner in Oklahoma I’m not anxious for this trend to spread.

Is this true and are there any other moves like this in other states?

I’ve not heard of this. I have heard of paying a per-mile tax using GPS transponders. Ugh.

I wouldn’t want to tax hybrids, they buy gas. But what about EVs? Or plugin hybrids? They should pay something for roads.

It seems to me that everyone that uses the roads should pay taxes for that use. I would not discourage vehicles that use less fuel by taxing them at a higher rate, though. The tax should be applied evenly across the populace as a fuel tax or road tax.

Gee, when I first saw “hybrid tax” I though immediately of the Supreme Court decision on the heath care law. I guess my mind was elsewhere.

This is how politicians solve the energy crisis, tax anyone making a positive contribution.

Whats wrong with user fees called tolls?,I dont like paying road tax on gas I use off road,wouldnt tolls automatically take care of the fairness problem?-Kevin

I’m with JT. If you use the roads you should pay your share. This has been an increasing problem as cars get better mileage. Now trucks and fleets are looking at converting to LP since the plentiful supply which will make it worse. Not yet but at some point, something else will need to be worked out to pay for the deteriorating infrastructure.

@kmccune -

Would tolls take care of it? Not exactly. If you’re looking to be “fair”, then you should tax based on how much you use the roads and how much wear and tear you cause on the roads. For the former, well, that could be pretty much a flat fee per vehicle on the road, with perhaps some exception for larger vehicles (a double trailer semi, for example, is so large you could nearly fit two Yarises in the same footprint at speed). That’s more of a toll based situation.

But there’s also the question of wear and tear. This is a direct function of the weight footprint of the vehicle. A Hummer H1 on 4 wheels will cause MUCH more damage to the road than a Yaris on its 4 wheels. The only way you get around this is to increase the number of tires in contact with the road so that the pressure on the road is greatly reduced… but I don’t see many 3 or 4 axle passenger vehicles around here. The beauty of this is that the weight of the vehicle normally causes an increase in gas consumption, though, meaning that a flat gas tax works well for this.

Now hybrids are a bit of an exception, because they can weigh a good amount and use less gas. Personally, though, I’m willing to let that slide since those buyers aren’t generally saving that much $ as it is, but they’re contributing to solving our overconsumption problem (and hence improving economic stability and national security).

They’ll get us either way ! everytime !
They’ll slap you in the face -or- kick you in the a$$, but they’ll gitcha one way or the other.

Just like cutting back and saving on natural gas useage at home.
The less we use…the higher the price per unit …BAM! gatcha !
They still need to make X dollars per year for all the overhead, capitol expense and maintainence, wages, insurances, rents, leases, etc.

Is this what you’re talking about?

PS…0.6 cents per mile, or $100 per year, is still just a fraction if the $$ a hybrid or electric car owner is going to save in gas, so I hardly think such a tax should discourage anyone from buying a hybrid or an electric vehicle.

PPS…and the article doesn’t say whether those measures actually became law.

We could just raise the gas tax. That would promote fuel efficiency and provide funds for road improvement, which will provide jobs, which will improve the economy, which will provide more jobs, which will improve the economy more…

If there’s no other tax method available, I’d be fine with an odometer for EV and plugin hybrids (not plain hybrids), along with CNG vehicles. Roads cost $$.

I can’t imagine any state being able to enact a hybrid tax. The conservatives would oppose it as they do any tax increase and the liberals would oppose it as bad for the environment. I just wish we’d change the federal gas tax to a percentage and get it back up to near the rate it used to be. I don’t want our highways to look like we’re a developing nation.

I don’t get how it’s simply impossible to raise the fuel tax to a level that would support the need (not to mention ending the spending of fuel tax money on non-highway projects) but it’s just dandy to build toll roads that cost people much more than the fuel tax increase would, and requires a whole new layer of government bureaucracy. Higher fuel taxes would spread out the burden, instead of concentrating it on a few people unfortunate enough to live in a place like Collin County, Texas, where you can’t really get around without paying tolls. The toll road users are paying for billions of dollars of improvements to completely unrelated projects, in addition to paying for the roads they’re actually using.

I’d support a mileage tax for vehicles that use a form of energy that isn’t subject to a highway-funding tax. This includes standard hybrids. I’d either discount fuel taxes paid from the mileage tax, or (more likely for the sake of simplicity) charge a lower rate than that for vehicles that don’t use taxed fuels. The fact that they use less gasoline does not mean that they use less road.

My problem with toll roads is that they always seem to attract corruption and organized crime. I’d rather pay higher taxes than invite in the mob. Orange County (So Cal) is a perfect example of what happens. A terrible mess that took years to untangle. Half the roads were unneeded except as a way of opening up undeveloped hills for construction. Buldings that shouldn’t have been allowed for environmental reasons and because they are in prime wildfire country. Gaaaa. I get upset thinking about the greed that drove that project, and I’m hundreds of miles away.

Throw the tax in on any vehicle purchase. Call it a road tax or whatever, but everyone has to pay it when they register the vehicle, no matter how many people the car goes through. Base it on the gross vehicle weight; a Civic would be taxed less than an F-450.
When you renew your tags every year or two(we can get 2 year stickers here in Ohio) you get hit with a road tax when you pay for your stickers.

Um, bscar2, we do that now in Minnesota at least. Just paid $1200 for tax and license and about $400 per car per year. Fuel tax is in addition to that.

Some of us, particularly those of us with walking disabilities, are tired of being treated like second class citizens because we don’t drive hybrids. You may be interested in the attached article describng what happened at the Nashua NH liquor store. The architect designed the building with hybrid parking right next to the doors and handicap parking farther out, in order to gain a higher LEEDS rating. Now I’m not against people promoting hybrids, but when it begins to take percedence over serving the beeds of the handicapped, many of whom are veterans, then IMHO it’s gone too far.

@the same mountainbike–The hotel we use when we visit my son has two prime parking places with recharging stations for electric vehicles. I have never seen them used and have wondered if these are reserved for electric vehicles only. A couple of years ago, my wife had had foot surgery and we had a handicap hangtag. We were going to a minor league baseball game and pulled into the municpal parking lot. There were no handicap parking places available, so the policeman directed us to a parking place with a charging station that said “Electric Vehicles Only”. I didn’t have an electric vehicle or a hybrid, but I guess the officer reasoned that these were easily accessible parking places and there were no electric vehicles around.