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GOP Tax Plan Targets $7,500 Credit for Electric Vehicles

The Netherlands is set to be the first nation to prohibit the sale of internal combustion engines in 2025, with all gas-powered vehicles off the road by 2030. (Pixabay)
The Netherlands is set to be the first nation to prohibit the sale of internal combustion engines in 2025, with all gas-powered vehicles off the road by 2030. (Pixabay)
November 9, 2017

DENVER – Industry leaders such as Tesla, Nissan and General Motors oppose the Republican plan in an upcoming House tax bill to eliminate a $7,500 tax credit for electric cars.

The proposal would deal a blow to electric transportation's growing momentum, which is quickly gaining ground in affordability with other fuel types.

David McNeil, secretary/treasurer of the Denver Electric Vehicle Council, says the proposal could hurt the industry in the short term.

But he says, "Coloradans will still get the Colorado tax credit. If the federal goes away, it'll be kind of a speed bump in the road in the progress of where electric cars are going to be in the future. But I don't think it's going to kill the electric car."

McNeil says Coloradans don't even have to wait to file their taxes to get the credit. People who buy electric vehicles can get up to $5,000 right at the dealership.

The federal tax credit in the House GOP's tax plan has not yet been finalized. Opponents of the credit say it unfairly favors electric vehicles.

McNeil says engines that run on gasoline – set to be phased out in some countries, including the Netherlands by 2030 – are inefficient. Just 30 percent of the fuel burned actually moves the car down the road.

McNeil maintains even fiscal conservatives should see the value of investing in renewable energy now rather than paying for the damage caused by climate change later.

"They're cleaner,” he points out. “As a result, we can kill a couple of birds with one stone, so to speak.

“We can have a cleaner environment. We can use a renewable energy source that's continually there. We don't eventually eliminate it."

Global pressures also are driving the shift toward electric, and the cost of batteries has dropped sharply in recent years.

Industry experts predict that, if the current trajectory holds, electric vehicles will be comparable in price to average vehicles within a decade.


Eric Galatas, Public News Service - CO