Virginia Senate Democratic Caucus Press Release
Richmond, VA—Earlier today, the Virginia Senate voted to pass of SB 127, which would repeal Virginia's $64 annual tax on hybrid electric vehicles. The bill garnered bipartisan support, passing on a 35-3 vote. The bill now moves to the House of Delegates. Governor McAuliffe has pledged to sign the bill in the event that it reaches his desk.
The hybrid tax, imposed as part of the compromise transportation reform bill that passed last year, has attracted opposition from both parties. Among those pushing for repeal or reform were Senator Chap Petersen (D - Fairfax), with SB 221; Senator Dave Marsden (D - Fairfax), with SB 38; Senator John Miller (D – Newport News), with SB 159; and Senator Adam Ebbin (D - Alexandria), with SB 1. All of these senators co-patroned SB 127.
Of the bill's passage in the Senate, Senator Ebbin said "I'm glad my colleagues have voted to repeal this illogical and punitive tax. More than 7,300 Virginians have supported our repeal effort and in the Senate we were able to accomplish that. I am hopeful that my colleagues in the House of Delegates will see fit to do the same."
Senator Marsden added, "When we compromised to pass the transportation package last year, the hybrid tax was one of the results. As we work to improve transportation and give Virginians more options, I'm glad that we were able to repeal this unnecessary tax. We should continue to support drivers who are trying to protect our environment and reduce our dependence on foreign oil."
"I'm pleased that lawmakers from both parties came together to remove this unfair tax," said Senator Miller. "It was an unfair tax that singled out hybrids, while some gas-powered cars get better mileage.
We have asked people to conserve gas and reduce our dependence on foreign oil. We should not hit them with an unfair tax for doing the right thing."
Senator Petersen said, "Taxation should be simple, uniform and transparent. The hybrid penalty is none of those (and contributes less than .02% of our transportation revenue). I'm pleased that the members of the Senate agree its time to end this unfair penalty."