Phase one of Charge Up New Jersey kicks off - you can now get your rebate check!

Back in January, we reported that New Jersey Governor, Phil Murphy, signed into law legislation that will make buying an electric vehicle in the Garden State much more attractive. The new incentive program offered a point-of-sale rebate of up to $5,000.00 on the purchase or lease of a new electric vehicle. 

The bill was signed into law and took effect on January 17th, 2020. However, the state still hadn't ironed out all of the "Charge Up New Jersey" program details, therefore the rebates couldn't be issued at the point of sale, as intended. However, all qualifying EV purchases and leases would still get the rebate check, once the program necessary to administer the checks was in place, and that just happened.

New Jersey selected the NJ Board of Public Utilities as the entity to administer the program and they stated they would have the program details completed and the program in full operation in about six months from the signing of the legislation. 

The NJBPU outlined a two-step plan, in which phase one would offer consumers that have already purchased a qualifying EV a means to get their rebate directly from the state. The second phase will enable dealerships to apply the incentive directly at the time of sale. Phase two is expected to begin sometime in July or August.

New Jersey EV rebate

Until phase two begins and the incentive becomes a point-of-sale rebate, customers have to claim their rebate post-purchase, at the Charge Up New Jersey website

To be eligible, the MSRP (not the final selling price) of the vehicle must be less than $55,000. The amount of rebate is based on the electric range of the vehicle, with a $25.00 credit given for every mile of EPA-rated electric range. The maximum rebate is $5,000 and is offered to vehicles with 200 or more miles of electric range.

Plug-in hybrids are eligible for the same rebate; however only for the first 3 three years of the program. The PHEV rebate sunsets at the end of 2022. The rebate program is funded through New Jersey's Clean Energy Fund and will continue for 10 years at a maximum of $30 million per year, not to exceed a total of $300 million.

The rebate program is in addition to New Jersey's existing sales tax exemption of all-electric vehicles in the state. The combination of the Charge Up New Jersey rebate and the sales tax exemption makes New Jersey the most aggressive state in the nation with regards to EV subsidies, offering a possible savings of up to $8,643.

Add to that the potential federal tax credit, and an individual can save more than $16,000 on the purchase of an EV, and that's without any in-dealer negotiating. 

Young couple holding  key of their new car in dealership showroom

Additional requirements to participate in the incentive program include:

Customers must have purchased or leased an eligible vehicle in New Jersey on or after January 17, 2020. If the vehicle is purchased, leased, or delivered out-of-state then it is not eligible, including vehicles ordered online and delivered out-of-state. 

Charge Up New Jersey is limited to individuals only, as businesses, governments, and public entities are not eligible. Applicants must be a New Jersey resident at the time of purchase or lease. Active duty military members stationed in the state with permanent residency in another state are eligible.

Applicants are required to remain a resident of New Jersey for at least two (2) years after the purchase or lease of the eligible electric vehicle which receives an incentive under the Charge Up New Jersey program. Although I'm not quite sure how that will be monitored and enforced.

Recipients of the rebate must retain ownership or an active lease agreement and registration of the vehicle in New Jersey for a minimum of 36 consecutive months immediately after the vehicle purchase or lease date.

Leased vehicles must reflect a minimum of 36 months on the original lease agreement. Finally, applicants may only receive up to four vehicle incentives from the Charge Up New Jersey program throughout the ten-year period the program is active.

The timing of the rebate program is perfect for Plug In America's PlugStar EV dealership training and certification program. The program was recently launched in New Jersey, and the Charge Up New Jersey rebate program will undoubtedly increase demand for plug-in vehicles in the state.

PlugStar helps dealers communicate the value of driving electric, better understand state and federal incentives, charging, and provides dealers with local electricity rates so they can explain to customers exactly how much the car will cost to charge. Dealers in New Jersey interested in becoming a PlugStar dealership can do so from the PlugStar website

With the combination of the new point-of-sale incentives, as well as improved EV dealership training and support, New Jersey's EV future is looking bright.