South Carolina Considers $120 Annual Fee For Electric Vehicles – $60 For Hybrids

FEB 22 2014 BY ERIC LOVEDAY 21

LEAF Owners Would Be required to Pay $120 Annually in South Carolina If Proposed Legislation Passes

LEAF Owners Would Be Required to Pay $120 Annually in South Carolina If Proposed Legislation Passes

Lawmakers in South Carolina are reportedly considering two separate annual fees for alt-fuel vehicles:

South Carolina

South Carolina

  • Hybrids / PHEVs: $60
  • EVs: $120

South Carolina is of course one of numerous states who are now either assessing or considering assessing annual fees for plug-in vehicle owners.

The idea in South Carolina is much the same as elsewhere across the US: the fees are deemed necessary to make up for lost gas tax revenue.

South Carolina Senator Ray Cleary (Republican), stated:

“People who are using electric cars get to ride the roads for free.  That doesn’t sound fair. Of course, everybody wants somebody else to pay for it.”

We personally have no problem with these road-use fees, so long as they get assessed fairly.

Source: NACS Online

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21 Comments on "South Carolina Considers $120 Annual Fee For Electric Vehicles – $60 For Hybrids"

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Here we go again. Like smacking a hornet’s nest! 😉

Seems like an easy simple solution would be to drop the gas tax and add a mileage-based license plate renewal fee. Say 1 cent per mile. Not perfect, but better than the current system or what’s being proposed.

I disagree, the easiest solution is the annual fee as many states do not have annual inspections and implementing annual inspections would create a whole new level of red tape. Now in states that you have an annual inspection infrastructure, the complication becomes how does the state determine what was driven on state roads and what was driven out of state? It would require some sort of GPS black box and that brings in the nefarious specter of government tracking your movements [and it will].

In sum, the fee seems the simplest way of assessing without becoming intrusive.

No new inspections. No in-state vs out-of-state. No GPS tracking. No extra red tape. When you renew your license tag, you simply record your mileage, and the difference from your previous renewal helps determine what you pay. The vehicle mileage was already recorded when the vehicle was titled, so it’s really just an extension of that. Sure you could lie, but who would risk felony tax evasion to save a few dollars? Especially if there is a slim chance of being audited at your local DMV.

I guess you could just go with a flat $100 annual rate instead, but that’s not really fair to those who don’t drive much … like the poor/elderly.

Gas taxes have been falling short since before EVs became ‘mainstream’. Raise the gas tax… it will promote heavier adoption of electric vehicles to the benefit of everyone. When raising gas taxes gets to a point where it can’t compensate for the high percentage of licensed EVs, that is when the annual fee should be implemented.

I agree, raise the gas tax but I still feel that EV road use fees are totally reasonable. I did the math for WA and $100/yr is about what a Prius racks up in gas tax. Seems fair enough.

You’re right, EV road use fees are totally reasonable. It’s not that I think these fees are unfair in any way, it’s just that I feel incentivizing EV adoption is a smart choice in this infancy stage. I don’t have the hard data to analyze, but I would venture a guess that raising gas taxes 1% would bring in more money than a $100/EV charge.

In the end, I’m fine with a road use fee… as you stated, it is fair. I just hope it doesn’t dissuade anyone from going electric.

Yes, this is yet another anti-EV crusading camouflaged in the lingo of “fairness”.

How many EVs are licensed in SC right now?

I bet just the time and resources spent on crafting this way-premature law cost more than it will bring in on its first couple of years.

And what is the South Carolina state gas tax? oh yeah, 16 cents per gallon. You need to burn 750 gallons/year in your ICE, to pay the same as EVs will be charged now.

“Fairness”, my ass. Do they really have no other priority

As Jon Stewart perfectly put it a couple of days ago: American state legislatures have become the Meth Labs of Democracy. The worst ideas travel the fastest from one of those “Labs” to the next.

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/thu-february-20-2014/the-states–meth-labs-of-democracy

A tax before its time; it will cost them more money to install and administer this idea than they make off the charges. Why don’t they wait until the number of registered EVs is at least large enough to count before sticking out their hand for a tax. But then what do you expect from a State Government that casts it lot with the GOP. I swear every damn thing they do is against the welfare of their own people and designed for their own self-serving interests. I don’t trust them to solve a problem that doesn’t hurt the good people of the state’s middle-class.

Give it a rest. I love how people try to make everything about Red vs Blue. WA has a S100/yr EV fee. It’s one of the bluest states in the country.

Washington it “Blue” in its Federal voting patterns and life-style liberalism.

It is one of the “Reddest” when it comes to economic policy, and very consistently so:

– No state income tax.
– Per-capita education funding among the lowest in the nation, and in blatant contempt of the state’s own constitution. In 2009 voters turned down an emergency 2% tax on the very rich to salvage that system. They turned it down by a margin of some 30%.
– Legislature that since the economic crisis started 6 years ago, hasn’t once pitched in to save one of the nation’s best regional mass-transit systems. Because what exactly?
– A flat and ridiculously low state car tab fee, one of many initiatives that a right-wing idiot initiative-king has managed to pass with the direct support of voters. Oops, forgot one thing: the car tabs fund the state ferry system – again, the most successful in the nation but now under repeated budget shortfalls.

So yes, Washington’s EV law will become the excuse for all the red and purple states to enact their own versions, instead of say raise the gas tax by 3 cents (which will bring in way more money, in every single case).

To be completely fair they should just raise the state tax on electricity. Like gas it’s a usage tax, the more you use the more you pay. The counter argument: why should I pay more for electricity even though I don’t drive an ev, falls flat in regards to so many taxes. Taxes for schools, for instance, the argument:I have no children so why should I pay taxes for education, or anything I don’t not use directly, or benefit from? Well everyone uses infrastructure like roads, even those who don’t drive.

Red states still suck. 😉

Yeah, the low taxes, low crime, and low unemployment are really difficult to tolerate. Detroit is a much better model.

So after all those years of the government telling us that they were raising gas taxes because they wanted to reduce gas usage (like cigarettes), now they cry foul that some people don’t use any gas, and should “pay their fair share”.

I agree with a gas tax raise. When I see my neighbor sitting in his car on his driveway for 30 minutes with an idling engine just so he can smoke pot and listen to music I can only conclude gas is by far not expensive enough. (I live in NC which has higher gas taxes than SC)

So you’re cool with your neighbor’s illegal drug use in front of any kids that might be watching … but you just hate that he’s funding your state roads while not actually using them.

That’s funny!

What my neighbor pumps into his lungs is his problem. (potentially also for law enforcement)
I just hate the wasted gasoline and exhaust fumes because they _do_ affect me.

Are there any actual estimates, or scenarios, or models on which the $120 number is based, or is it just pulled out of thin air? It has always sounded to me in this and other cases where fees have been proposed that fees are being proposed by folks who don’t have a heck of a lot of knowledge behind it. Why not $5? Remember, most pure electric ev’s are range limited, so they’re actually easy on the roads…..

EVs depend on good quality roads and smooth pavement, perhaps more than most other type of cars. I would not mind contributing a little more if that helped in that direction.

That $60 savings could go towards the upgrade cost for a RE on an i3.

$10.00 per month? Not too bad. Less than 3 gallons of gas. I guess I can afford it since my transportation fuel cost are about one cent per mile.