TO ALL MEDIA
JJ McCoy, firstname.lastname@example.org, (206) 621-0094
Marc Krasnowsky, email@example.com, (425) 281-0668
Good news for utilities, consumers and the climate
as Gov. Inslee signs electric vehicle incentive bill
OLYMPIA, Wash. – The region took another step toward its clean energy future today as Washington Gov. Jay Inslee signed into law a bipartisan bill improving state tax incentives for buying electric vehicles.
House Bill 2778 raises the maximum purchase price for tax break-eligible vehicles to $42,500 from $35,000. With the increase, buyers of electric cars with 200-mile ranges such as the Chevy Bolt, the next-generation Nissan Leaf and the Tesla Model 3 will save up to $3,100 in state sales taxes. Add in federal incentives and consumers can save up to $10,000 on an EV purchase.
“This bill will help get more Washington residents behind the wheel of a great electric vehicle, helping to create a lower-carbon transportation system,” said NW Energy Coalition senior policy associate JJ McCoy, who also serves as volunteer legislative director for the Seattle Electric Vehicle Association. “They’ll be improving air quality while paying the equivalent of 85 cents per gallon of gas to power their vehicles.”
The NW Energy Coalition and member group Climate Solutions, along with General Motors, worked to pass the bill during the just-completed legislative session. Sponsoring Reps. Jake Fey (D-Tacoma) and Ed Orcutt (R-Kalama) and House and Senate transportation chairs Rep. Judy Clibborn (D-Mercer Island) and Sen. Curtis King (R-Yakima) were instrumental in the bill’s passage.
Vehicle electrification presents both opportunities and challenges to utilities and to their customers. Utilities can add “good load” that actually reduces climate-changing emissions. Everyone can benefit from the more efficient use of the electric grid and the opportunities to better integrate variable renewable energy sources offered by vehicle electrification.
But work must be done to put infrastructure in place and to assure that the benefits are shared by all billpayers, especially those who can’t afford $40,000 cars. Rates and fees for vehicle charging should not be burdensome.
For more information on what transportation electrification can and should mean for electric utilities and users, read the McCoy-authored Coalition paper, “Building ‘good load’ to reduce carbon emissions: Getting Northwest utilities more involved in widespread transportation electrification.”
The NW Energy Coalition is a 35-year-old alliance of 100 environmental, labor, civic, faith and human service organizations, progressive utilities and businesses in Idaho, Montana, Oregon Washington and British Columbia committed to a clean and affordable energy future.