Second in an occasional series of stories on how states are overhauling tax codes to adapt to a new economy.
Lawmakers in California, home to almost half of the nation’s electric vehicles, decided this year to impose an annual fee on the owners of plug-in electric cars beginning in 2020.
Meanwhile, Maine is considering an annual fee on both plug-in electric vehicles and more popular hybrids, which run on both gasoline and electricity and recharge as they go. Both kinds of vehicles still make up a tiny share of cars on the road, but supporters of the idea are hopeful that revenue will rise as they become more popular.
State Rep. Andrew McLean, who chairs the Maine Legislature’s joint transportation committee, acknowledged that the new fee won’t raise a lot of money right away, but he said the move makes sense as a way to “begin the conversation” of tapping more revenue from electric and hybrid vehicles as their numbers grow.