Law of Unintended Consequences Kicks in on EV Free Parking

I received this note from correspondent Joe:

Re — EV Free Parking

I cannot believe this, instead they should address how these electric vehicles are going to pay their fair share of the road taxes that are combined in our gasoline prices.

So let’s see they will potentially park free and not pay for the upkeep of our road system.

I wonder what else we can give them

Joe has a point. EV drivers get car pool lane usage in many places even if they have only one person in the car. They get free parking in many cities. They don’t pay nearly as much road tax (Because they don’t use as much gas, and its the gas tax that pays for roads.) They get free electricity to charge their cars. What is next — Government subsidy of the price – Oh, we already have that with the $7500 tax credit. I wonder if the fact that battery manufacturers are getting lots of government help will keep the prices of batteries down? Yeah, right.

But let’s get back to the unintended consequences. The gas tax and its use for roads is a fairly even handed tax.  The more you drive, the more you use the roads and the more you pay. Fair enough. However if you have an electric car you may drive just as far, but you pay less, or nothing, for the maintenance of the roads.That’s not only not fair, its outright theft.

Has anyone considered a surtax for EVs, to cover the use of the highways? When the government does, and it will, should EV purchasers be able to return their cars as having bought them under false pretenses? In California the incentive for hybrids to drive in the carpool lane with only one person in the car has ended. Let’s see, I bought a hybrid so I could drive solo in the carpool lane, but now the law has changed and I can’t. I hate it when that happens. My favorite law cuts both ways.

BTW — If they get free charging, as is offered in many cities, what incentive is there for them to charge at home. Why not simply charge at the office and not at home? Every car will be charging and taking up that space. The garages will have to install more and more chargers and develop costly systems to handle the cars. So to solve this little problem, cities and private operators will start charging for electricity. I can see a PR nightmare looming on the horizon.

When you start offering “incentives” Pandora never gets back into the box.  You create more problems than you solve.

JVH

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4 Responses to Law of Unintended Consequences Kicks in on EV Free Parking

  1. Keith says:

    In our city, the electricity for a full charge is estimated to run around $1.50/day. Even at that number, it may be a way to encourage off peak, at home charging. Valet parking of EVs is a way to get all parkers charged up and have them pay for the service. It should be off street, keeping the on street spaces turning over.

  2. Joe says:

    The penalty is buying a car for $40K and using it for only commuting and short trips. Zero emissions benefits everyone, so early adopters should have privledges. The HOV perk expires in 2015 in California. Once a substantial percentage of our fleet are ZEVs, the highway tax will be addressed, surely.

  3. JVH says:

    Joe: We are dealing with the government here. Surely? Nothing is for sure
    JVH

  4. Joe says:

    Yes, of course. I see your point. The incompetent government is evil from top to bottom.

    None of us should be paying taxes for anything except the price to pay the military to invade oil-rich countries.

    That way, we can continue sucking benzene into our lungs daily. What was I thinking, making a sea-change in the future of this country?

    We should continue giving tax-breaks to Exxon and stand by while the rest of the world invests in 21st century technologies. Hydro-carbons are the past, present and future for us–clean coal, frakked natural gas. 54 mpg by 2025. After all, the infrastructure is already there!

    I know I would much rather pay $20 a day to commute to work than $1.50, and have the satisfaction of knowing I am helping some despot 13,000 miles away.

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