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New Hampshire - Annual EV and Hybrid Tax - Vote NO

Nikxice

Active Member
Oct 31, 2014
1,173
2,019
Hudson, NH
On Thursday 3/15/18 HB 1541 will come up for vote in the State House. Here is a link to the proposed legislation.
New Hampshire HB1541 | 2018 | Regular Session

This bill will create an annual registration tax of $200 for electric vehicles and $100 for hybrids. Currently there are approximately 1200 EVs and 8300 hybrids in NH. The income produced from imposing this tax will be small, slightly over one million dollars.

Another NH Tesla owner forwarded several excellent reasons why it is not a wise to pass HB 1541.

1. HB 1541 taxes ownership instead of taxing consumption, so there's no incentive to conserve.

2. Out-of-staters get a free ride. Unlike the gasoline tax, which is levied on NH residents and out-of-staters alike, HB 1541 only penalizes NH residents. There's no attempt to collect fees from out-of-state hybrid and electric vehicle owners, who also use NH roads, and who should also be contributing their fair share to the highway maintenance fund.

3. It's a regressive tax that discourages electric and hybrid vehicle purchases, especially for low-income residents. HB 1541 is a slap in the face to young adults who try to do their part to reduce their energy use.

4. HB 1541 raises so little revenue that the administrative costs (such as DMV software enhancements) could exceed the revenue produced. Thus its effect is largely punitive.

5. Sales of electricity for electric cars are an important future revenue stream for New Hampshire's utility companies. HB 1541 will have a chilling effect on this emerging market.

6. Hybrid and electric vehicles produce fewer emissions than gas and diesel cars. This should be encouraged and rewarded, not punished.

Email [email protected] today and urge the House to VOTE NO on HB 1541.

You may also want to call or email your Representatives individually. They can be located using this link.
NH House of Representatives

The vote is on Thursday. Let's get this defeated!
 
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Nikxice

Active Member
Oct 31, 2014
1,173
2,019
Hudson, NH
Here is another bill that is similar, but, it is based on consumption. Example, the amount of miles driven per year would determine how much you would have to pay for road taxes. HB1763

I got this from one of 5 reps in my town.

New Hampshire HB1763 | 2018 | Regular Session

Thanks for posting. I received a response from one of the sponsors of HB1763, Rep. Almy from Lebanon. Here is a quote from her text...... "I hope you won’t be as fervently opposed to HB1763, going on the floor next week, which represents a fairer, long-term solution to the rapidly increasing fuel efficiency of the entire fleet."....... A road usage tax for vehicles does seem to be a fairer solution.
 

MorrisonHiker

Well-Known Member
Moderator
Mar 8, 2015
10,547
10,569
Colorado
Thanks for posting. I received a response from one of the sponsors of HB1763, Rep. Almy from Lebanon. Here is a quote from her text...... "I hope you won’t be as fervently opposed to HB1763, going on the floor next week, which represents a fairer, long-term solution to the rapidly increasing fuel efficiency of the entire fleet."....... A road usage tax for vehicles does seem to be a fairer solution.
A road usage tax can be more fair but it can also be more punitive if the miles are actually driven outside the state. Imagine doing a cross-country road trip and then having to pay taxes in NH even though 99% of the miles would be outside the state of NH. If they do implement such a tax based on miles, it should be based on miles within the state...or have a cap so that you don't end up paying hundreds or thousands of dollars to NH for miles driven out of state.
 
I'm actually in favor of the tax, just not the implementation.

I believe in paying for the roads. If I'm not using gas, I'm not paying the gas tax. I calculated, based on meticulous records, that I was paying $200 in *combined* federal and state gas taxes.

There needs to be a better way to pay for the roads when you're not paying the gas tax, preferably on a monthly basis - like an optional auto-pay.
 
To clarify, HB1763 does NOT tax based on how much you drive. It assumes all vehicles are driven 10,000 miles per year. It taxes based on how fuel efficient your car is. Cars that are more fuel efficient (higher MPG) will be taxed more than less efficient cars to offset the fact that less efficient cars pay more gas tax. The bill explicitly exempts vehicles with less than 20 MPG from paying the new tax. This was to exempt trucks. My problem with it is that the current structure encourages people to buy more fuel efficient cars to cut back on gas consumption and this bill would remove that tax incentive. You would have an incentive in terms of having to buy less gas, but the difference would be less than it is today. The road usage fee would be up to $111 for the most fuel efficient (>50 MPG) and electric cars.
 

Nikxice

Active Member
Oct 31, 2014
1,173
2,019
Hudson, NH
By exempting trucks, they are exempting the vehicles that do orders of magnitude more wear and tear on the roads, far more than the differential in road taxes compared to smaller vehicles.

The representatives who responded to me voiced a common theme, basically nothing is perfect. Here's a quote from one rep that hints at your point. "The below-20mpg car pays more than this in gas tax, the pick-ups and trucks much more, and their registration costs are higher, directly by weight for eight tons and over." They're obviously not yet considering the eventual arrival of EV pick-ups and semi trucks. I suppose over time we'll see this legislature evolve and adjust.
 

ItsNotAboutTheMoney

Well-Known Member
Jul 12, 2012
11,644
9,738
Maine
A road usage tax can be more fair but it can also be more punitive if the miles are actually driven outside the state. Imagine doing a cross-country road trip and then having to pay taxes in NH even though 99% of the miles would be outside the state of NH. If they do implement such a tax based on miles, it should be based on miles within the state...or have a cap so that you don't end up paying hundreds or thousands of dollars to NH for miles driven out of state.

Ideally, you'd have that, but at this point I'd rather have a simple approach with the correct underlying principle than the current system that leads to so much hand-wringing or the totally unfair fixed fee band-aids we're seeing used by states all over the country.

(We're seeing the same financially absurd proposals suggested here).
 
An update on HB1763. The Senate Transportation Committee is recommending that the bill be sent to study, which would effectively defeat it. The Senate will be voting on the bill on Thursday, but it is on the consent calendar, which means that there is not expected to be any opposition to this move.
 
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Nikxice

Active Member
Oct 31, 2014
1,173
2,019
Hudson, NH
An update on HB1763. The Senate Transportation Committee is recommending that the bill be sent to study, which would effectively defeat it. The Senate will be voting on the bill on Thursday, but it is on the consent calendar, which means that there is not expected to be any opposition to this move.

Nice. Eventually a tax will hit us in some form or another. Seems likely this will come up annually. When we get Tesla sales and service in NH the Legislature will surely take notice. No tax for now is a slight purchase incentive, so if you can dodge the tolls, (except for the unfortunate residents of Merrimack!) perhaps free EV road usage can continue for a while longer in NH.
 

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