Consumer Reports on excess EV fees

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bwilson4web

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#1
My apologies as it was late and I've been successfully working on my SR+ Model 3. Per suggestions, the bold and italics are 'proposed' from the article. Personally I would have preferred to digitize the report but not wanting to cause a copyright fracas, did a hurried report:

The February 2020, Consumer Reports, has a map showing excessive EV fees by state, pp. 14. Alabama is listed at 80% excess (i.e., nearly twice as much.) The States listed and their EXCESS tax/fees:
  • 191% - Arizona
  • 185% - Missouri
  • 142% - Texas
  • 132% - Arkansas
  • 130% - Wyoming
  • 112% - Minnesota
  • 100% - Mississippi
  • 80% - Alabama
  • 74% - Oklahoma
  • 61% - North Carolina
  • 48% - Georgia
  • 45% - North Dakota
  • 37% - West Virgina
  • 37% - Washington
  • 36% - Ohio
  • 21% - Idaho
  • <20% - Kansas, Missouri, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire
IMHO, carry a copy of this article and give it to any politician soliciting votes and donations with the comment,"Your donation was given to the Dept. of Revenue."

BACKGROUND: Proposed by the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), this excessive tax/fee is equivalent to a 'hippy' tax. Like the old 1960s legislation that sought to ban clothing made out an American flag worn by long haired and bearded, it is aimed at EV owners alone and often passed with State gas tax increases (at least in Alabama.)

Source: https://whnt.com/2019/03/13/rebuild-alabama-act-adds-new-registration-fee-for-ev-and-hybrid-drivers/

Whitt isn't pleased with the brand new $200 annual registration fee on EVs, $100 for hybrids, that will start next year. It will then increase by $3 every four years starting in 2023.

So let's work the problem backwards from an 18% Alabama gas tax that we had last year:
  • $200 / 18% = $1,111.11 of gasoline not bought by this EV owner
  • $1,111.11 / $2.22 (gas buddy) = 500.5 gallons of regular
  • 16,532 miles in 10 months ~= 19,846 miles projected first year of SR+ Model 3 ownership
  • approximately 20,000 miles / 500 gallons ~= 40 MPG tax equivalent
Now I'm retired but even when working, 20k miles per year was common in our Prius. We could afford a mobile lifestyle because the Prius got 52-58 MPG.

So what would a 'fair tax' be?
  • wheel count - every wheel costs $25 including trailers
    • $50 motorcycles
    • $100 ordinary cars and pickups
    • $150 dual-wheeled pickups and delivery vans
    • $50 light duty trailers
    • $100 dual-wheeled trailers
    • $150 RVs
  • eliminate or greatly reduce the gas tax, everyone has a farm equipment fuel tax
    • a fuel tax of say 5-9% would increase 'out of State' buyers to fund our roads
So how am I dealing with it? Make more miles!!

Our EVs cost 1/3 per mile lower than an efficient Prius and closer to 1/5th per mile cheaper than the 'white collar cowboys' driving ego-mobile pickups. You know the ones without a scratch, spec of mud, and perfect chromed tow ball sitting on oversized, knobby tires. If I go from 20k miles per year to 40k miles per year, the tax equivalent becomes 80 MPG.

Bob Wilson

ps. I test drove my SR+ Model 3 this evening and my repairs worked! I have one kludge to back out but now I can drive 120 miles to Nashville to get the right part and do more Tesla tricks.
 
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jsmay311

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#5
Thanks. Did they include Illinois? As of 2020, EV annual registration fee is $100 more than non-EV fee, approximately 66% higher.
Bob - What are excess fees?
In their analysis, CR is comparing each state's EV fees to how much an average new car would pay in gas taxes. So, in the case of Illinois, the EV fees are still less than the average car would pay in state gas taxes, so IL doesn't make this list.

https://www.consumerreports.org/hyb...-have-the-highest-fees-for-electric-vehicles/
 

jsmay311

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#6
The February 2020, Consumer Reports, has a map showing excessive EV fees by state, pp. 14. Alabama is listed at 80% excess (i.e., nearly twice as much.) The States listed and their EXCESS tax/fees:
  • 191% - Arizona
  • 185% - Missouri
  • 142% - Texas
  • 132% - Arkansas
  • 130% - Wyoming
  • 112% - Minnesota
  • 100% - Mississippi
  • 80% - Alabama
  • 74% - Oklahoma
  • 61% - North Carolina
  • 48% - Georgia
  • 45% - North Dakota
  • 37% - West Virgina
  • 37% - Washington
  • 36% - Ohio
  • 21% - Idaho
  • <20% - Kansas, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire,
IMHO, carry a copy of this article give it to any politician soliciting votes and donations with the comment,"Your donation was given to the Dept. of Revenue."

Bob Wilson
Careful there, Bob. Some of the states and percentages that you listed above are proposed EV fees that are not yet, and may never be, signed into law.

Minnesota is one such example. (You can see the details for each state by hover over the state on the interactive map.)

1578611958888-png.31670
 
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jsmay311

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#7
Here's the updated list, including only current law:
  • 191% - Arizona
  • 185% - Missouri (Actually 15%)
  • 142% - Texas
  • 132% - Arkansas
  • 130% - Wyoming
  • 112% - Minnesota
  • 100% - Mississippi
  • 80% - Alabama
  • 74% - Oklahoma
  • 61% - North Carolina
  • 48% - Georgia
  • 45% - North Dakota
  • 37% - West Virginia
  • 37% - Washington
  • 36% - Ohio
  • 21% - Idaho
  • <20% - Kansas, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire,
Still... it's insane and infuriating that any state would place punitive taxes/fees on residents for doing something that benefits everyone.

Trying to offset lost gas tax revenue is one thing, but punishing people and making them pay even more than their share is indefensible. (Not terribly surprising though that all but one of these states voted Republican in 2016.)
 
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Feathermerchant

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#8
So I see the map and numbers but no explanation of how they got there. There have to be assumptions of miles driven per year and average MPG to come up with those factors.
The average miles driven varies from state to state and is probably a lot more for someone who drives his truck for oilfield work in West Texas than say Delaware.
Note that as average gas mileage has increased, the states have collected less tax per mile driven. The gas tax needs to be raised.

I think the only way to be fair is to keep track of mileage driven per year by car. For areas that do emission inspection or safety inspection yearly, that mileage could be captured by the OBDC.
It is usually tracked on Title transfers too so that info could be used to 'catch up' if necessary. Otherwise they will have to figure out how to add the tax to the kWh bought while charging. But what about charging at home?
 

DennisP

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#10
Hmmm.... I haven't read anything about Arizona so I wonder where they get this. I paid around $150 to register my 3 for 5 years less than a year ago. My previous Beemer's ran around $700 per year before that.....
 

GDN

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#11
Confirmed TX has no special EV fee. They've tried, but so far successfully beat it back. We aren't opposed to the fee, we are just opposed to a fee that is much higher than non EV, which I know is the point of the article. It has not passed here yet however.
 

shareef777

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#12
In their analysis, CR is comparing each state's EV fees to how much an average new car would pay in gas taxes. So, in the case of Illinois, the EV fees are still less than the average car would pay in state gas taxes, so IL doesn't make this list.

https://www.consumerreports.org/hyb...-have-the-highest-fees-for-electric-vehicles/
IL gas tax is at $.38 per gallon. Doing 10k mi the added $100 fee assumes our vehicles are only getting 38mpg. A hybrid is paying less than a BEV :mad:

BEVs are closer to 100 MPGe. At 10k mi per year and the $.38 IL gas tax the fee should of only been $38, and this is almost triple.
 

Klaus-rf

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#13
Hmmm.... I haven't read anything about Arizona so I wonder where they get this. I paid around $150 to register my 3 for 5 years less than a year ago. My previous Beemer's ran around $700 per year before that.....
When I purchased my M3 in September, 2018 the Arizona 5-year license and tax fee was $91.05.

There was at that time a proposed (and, I thought already signed into law) additional $200/year to go in effect on Jan 01, 2019. fee. To make up for the non-collectable gas tax on EVs I calculated that $200 ot be 4x what I currently pay in petrol taxes driving a prius (10K miles x .19/mile = $38/year). So $200/year additional is definitely intended to punishment registering an EV. And AZ does not provide any EV rebate or other tax credits.

If your 5-year fee was only $150 in CY 2019, then I suspect that law was changed. Good news.
 

Feathermerchant

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#14
The tax cannot keep going down just because cars use less gas. The tax is supposed to be for road maintenance which is pretty much unrelated to mileage. BEV cars are today generally heavier than ICE cars so if anything we should pay more. So far most of us have paid nothing but don't expect it to last.
 

MelindaV

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The February 2020, Consumer Reports, has a map showing excessive EV fees by state, pp. 14. Alabama is listed at 80% excess (i.e., nearly twice as much.) The States listed and their EXCESS tax/fees:
  • 191% - Arizona
  • 185% - Missouri
  • 142% - Texas
  • 132% - Arkansas
  • 130% - Wyoming
  • 112% - Minnesota
  • 100% - Mississippi
  • 80% - Alabama
  • 74% - Oklahoma
  • 61% - North Carolina
  • 48% - Georgia
  • 45% - North Dakota
  • 37% - West Virgina
  • 37% - Washington
  • 36% - Ohio
  • 21% - Idaho
  • <20% - Kansas, Pennsylvania, New Hampshire,
IMHO, carry a copy of this article give it to any politician soliciting votes and donations with the comment,"Your donation was given to the Dept. of Revenue."

Bob Wilson
you should update your #1 post to show those that are CURRENT vs PROPOSED. as some of those highest ones currently are 0% above the gas tax but you've listed the proposed fee.

EDIT - just based on Washington State, it also seems they are calculating this based on only the state fuel tax, not the federal, which is weird.

Wa EV registration is an additional $225/year (over the typical registration). TOTAL gas tax is $.678/gallon. WA state gas tax is $.494. Based on 12000 miles at 36MPG, at $.494 tax the total is $169.37, which would calc out to the 37%. based on the total tax, the gas tax would be $226, so right at the $225 EV registration surcharge. Unless they are using a way different miles driven per year or MPG efficiency, something is up with their numbers.

(if anyone is interested, WA has the highest weed tax in the country at 37%, or approx $85/ounce)
 
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shareef777

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#16
The tax cannot keep going down just because cars use less gas. The tax is supposed to be for road maintenance which is pretty much unrelated to mileage. BEV cars are today generally heavier than ICE cars so if anything we should pay more. So far most of us have paid nothing but don't expect it to last.
It’d get pretty difficult to charge a variable fee based on weight. The easiest and fairest option would be to charge by mile based on class of vehicle. So trucks/commercial would pay more, while motorcycles would pay less. Those that drive more, pay more. And those that don’t drive at all (or minimal) have the least impact on the roads and therefore should pay the least.
 

Mike

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#17
It’d get pretty difficult to charge a variable fee based on weight. The easiest and fairest option would be to charge by mile based on class of vehicle. So trucks/commercial would pay more, while motorcycles would pay less. Those that drive more, pay more. And those that don’t drive at all (or minimal) have the least impact on the roads and therefore should pay the least.
I've actually proposed this to my local member of provincial parliament (Ontario).

On two occasions within the past two years, I formally recommended:
  • eliminate all taxes on any liquid fuel that is directed towards "road maintenance",
  • implement a "road maintenance fee" that one pays every year upon the normal, $120/year tag renewal (one's birth month),
  • the new fee is based on a matrix of total kms driven since the last tag renewal and gross vehicle weight rating.
I never hear anything back...
 

bwilson4web

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#18
Over night, I realize someone might ask 'How did Consumer Reports (CR) come up with these percentages?' I've had trouble with CR math in the past and this article suffers from both a poor graphic and murky math. So I appreciate your approach:
Wa EV registration is an additional $225/year (over the typical registration). TOTAL gas tax is $.678/gallon. WA state gas tax is $.494. Based on 12000 miles at 36MPG, at $.494 tax the total is $169.37, which would calc out to the 37%. based on the total tax, the gas tax would be $226, so right at the $225 EV registration surcharge. Unless they are using a way different miles driven per year or MPG efficiency, something is up with their numbers.
Using Alabama's "80%", what is the CR optimum tax/fee? I don't know but here is how I would approach the problem:
Doing the math:
  • 15,000 miles / 33.8 MPG ~= 443.8 gallons per year
  • 443.8 gal * $0.24/gal ~= $106.51 gas tax revenue
  • $200 EV tax / $106.51 gas tax revenue = 188 %, ~88 % excess EV taxing
  • $200 EV tax - $106.51 = $93.49 excess EV tax
Rather than getting pissed, turn the problem on its head and kill gasoline fuel taxes with a universal vehicle tax. To handle scaling, $25/tire works. Keep just enough tax to handle the $6.51. With such cheaper gas, people in Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Florida will cross into Alabama to buy our cheaper gas.

Bob Wilson

ps. My favorite math joke:
Two mathematics professors are sitting in a restaurant.
The first one says: "The average person is, mathematically, an idiot. People don't know algebra, can't figure out percents, can't read a simple graph, and don't even get me started on calculus..."
The second professor disagrees, "Surely you're exaggerating. Most people know all the math they need to know, or more."
Some time later, the first professor goes to the men's room. The other mathematician beckons to the waitress and says, "Next time you come to our table, I am going to ask you a question. No matter what I ask, I want you to answer by saying 'x-squared'. Please don't mess it up and there's an extra tip coming your way."
The waitress agrees. When the first mathematician returns, his companion says, "So lets put your theory to the test. I am going to ask some random person who comes by our table an elementary calculus question, and we'll see if they can solve it."
Soon the waitress comes by and he says, "Excuse me, Miss, can you bring me more tea, please -- and by the way -- can you tell me what the integral of 2x with respect to x is?"
The waitress replies, "Certainly sir, more tea it is. And it's x-squared."
The mathematician says, "See! What did I tell you?" His friend is dumbfounded.
The waitress, meanwhile, goes to bring tea, and, having turned her back on the two professors, mutters under her breath: "Plus a constant."
 

MelindaV

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#19
Over night, I realize someone might ask 'How did Consumer Reports (CR) come up with these percentages?' I've had trouble with CR math in the past and this article suffers from both a poor graphic and murky math. So I appreciate your approach:

Using Alabama's "80%", what is the CR optimum tax/fee? I don't know but here is how I would approach the problem:
Doing the math:
  • 15,000 miles / 33.8 MPG ~= 443.8 gallons per year
  • 443.8 gal * $0.24/gal ~= $106.51 gas tax revenue
  • $200 EV tax / $106.51 gas tax revenue = 188 %, ~88 % excess EV taxing
  • $200 EV tax - $106.51 = $93.49 excess EV tax
Rather than getting pissed, turn the problem on its head and kill gasoline fuel taxes with a universal vehicle tax. To handle scaling, $25/tire works. Keep just enough tax to handle the $6.51. With such cheaper gas, people in Georgia, Tennessee, Mississippi, and Florida will cross into Alabama to buy our cheaper gas.

Bob Wilson
Your AL example does not include the federal gas tax. That was my point. The article and crappy graph appears to not really take the full impact at the pump into consideration.
Al’s CURRENT state tax is .2191 and the federal is . 184 for a total of $.4031
in your example at 15000 miles and 33.8 mpg the complete tax paid at the pump is $178.89, which is under the EV registration by $21.11, not $93.49.
 

JasonF

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#20
Plain and simple, I believe the excessive registration fees are because the lawmakers have been pushed by oil or automotive lobbyists to get rid of EV’s in the state entirely. Since they don’t have the means or the courage to just ban them from being sold or registered in the state altogether, they go for subtle ways to make them less attractive by adding penalties and hardships hoping to make EV’s unattainably expensive.

They use road tax as a tool to do that because they feel it will make the average gas car owner sympathetic to the changes. Banning EV’s upsets all drivers because it takes away a choice. Adding exorbiant fees to EV registration seems “fair” to gas car owners, because it evens the playing field since EV owners don’t have to pay for gas.

It also carries the subtle psychological effect that you’re breaking the law or social norms somehow by buying an EV. Because when else are you subject to excessively high government fees? When you break the law and get a ticket. That’s what it sounds like when you’re at the DMV, and the total fee is hundreds of dollars. The people around you think you must have lots of tickets.
 
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