May 24, 2013, 1:53pm CDT Link: http://www.bizjournals.com/austin/blog/abj-at-the-capitol/2013/05/pro-tesla-motors-bill-dies-in-texas.html by James JeffreyContributing Writer-Austin Business Journal Pro-Tesla Motors bill dies in Texas House Lawmakers have sided with dealers’ interests over those of Tesla Motors Inc. in the debate over whether manufacturers of electric- or all battery-powered vehicles should be able to sell directly to customers. House Bill 3351, authored by State Rep.Eddie Rodriguez, D-Austin, had proposed changing Texas law that mandates vehicles be sold to customers through dealerships. But stiff opposition from groups such as the Texas Automobile Dealers Association trumped the argument of Tesla CEO Elon Musk and supporters of the bill. Despite a spirited effort on the part of Musk, who visited the Capitol multiple times to support the bill, it failed to even be heard on the House floor. “For many, this was a new concept this session, so we had a lot of educating to do,” Rodriguez said. “We have now built a coalition, and I look forward to building consensus during the interim.” Musk may derive some consolation from the Senate passing two bills — HB 2623 and HB 1791 — that would help his company Space Exploration Technologies Corp., better known as SpaceX, establish the world’s first commercial orbital launch site in Texas. But the Tesla Motors bill, which Musk said was “life or death ” for his company in Texas, wasn’t to be this session. “We’ll try again in 2015,” Rodriguez said.