With a state rebate of up to $5,000 for the purchase of a plug-in car, Georgia has become something of a hotbed for EV sales, including the Tesla Model S. The electric automaker has been operating in a limited capacity due to anti-competitive laws put in place by local car dealers, but the Georgia senate has just passed a bill that would remove Tesla sales limitations.
The Atlanta Business Chronicle reports that the bill would allow Tesla to increase its number of stores from three to five, and also remove a cap of 150 vehicle sales per year. The vehicle cap is the biggest gain from this bill, which passed the Georgia senate with 48 votes for, and just 4 against. The bill will head to Governor Nathan Deal’s desk, and the Democrat-turned-Republican (circa 1995) is expected to sign it into law soon.
It’s a major victory for EV enthusiasts, though there are other battles being played out in the Peach state. Republicans are trying to repeal the $5,000 EV rebate (again) AND add a $200 a year tax on plug-in drivers, though EV advocates claim removing the tax credit will cost the state economy about $252 million, most of that going towards the cost of conventional car fuel and maintenance. There would also be about 44,000 fewer EV sales in Georgia, a state that’s becoming increasingly important to the auto industry as a whole, and not just Tesla.
There’s still plenty of battles for Tesla to fight though, with Texas and Connecticut both considering bills that would allow direct sales. Will these two polar opposite states follow the lead of places like Georgia, Massachusetts, and New Jersey?