HOUSTON – Texans, if you own an EV, you’re going to have to shell out a few extra bucks when you renew your registration.
The Texas Department of Motor Vehicles announced Tuesday that starting Sept. 1, electric vehicle (EV) owners in the state must pay an additional $200. That’s in addition to the usual $50.75 plus tax for most passenger vehicles.
Texans buying a new EV must pay $400 for the initial two-year registration period.
Additional costs do not apply to hybrid vehicles.
How was this law born?
According to several reports, lawmakers have been trying to find different ways to compensate for EV drivers’ lack of gasoline tax payments.
In May, Gov. Greg Abbott signed Senate Bill 505 into law, establishing a $400 fee for registering an electric vehicle in Texas, NBC affiliate KXAN reported. The bill passed unanimously in March by the State Senate and subsequently passed in the House.
Senator Robert Nichols, author of the bill, told KXAN that the law was aimed at ensuring that EV owners “pay their fair share” in state highway funding.
“We recognized a while ago that every time an all-electric vehicle hits the road and replaces a gasoline or diesel vehicle, the state highway fund loses money,” Nichols told KXAN in March. “So the focus here is to try to identify how much money we’re losing at both the state and federal levels and try to fix that with a fee adjustment.”
The Austin American-Statesman reported in May that two dozen states pay a similar tax for EVs, including California. However, the average cost paid by EV drivers was $119.54.
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