Louisiana is well known for having severely bad roads. You can always tell when you cross the state line–the roads are smoother in Mississippi, Texas, and Arkansas. Recently, there was a bill proposed to increase gasoline taxes and tax EV owners $400 per year to own an EV in the state. For hybrid owners, that tax would be $275 per year. However, Louisiana politricking’ happened as usual and the proposed gas tax increase was dropped while the EV tax remains planned.
According to The Advocate, the House actually sidelined this bill but according to the Louisiana State Legislature’s website, the bill is scheduled for floor debate on May 5, 2021. So which is it? Is the HB615 actually sidelined or is it going to the floor for debate?
The Advocate shared the story of two House Bills, HB 615 and HB 693. This is important because, for HB693, a proposed extension of the temporary sales tax increase of .45% was quickly approved by the state’s House Ways & Means Committee which is the state’s House tax-writing committee.
HB 615 was proposed to increase the tax on gasoline at the pump and generate around $315 million in additional revenue annually. It also proposed higher taxes on EV ownership in Louisiana. $400 annually per EV and $275 annually per hybrid EV.
That money would address a $14 billion backlog on road needs.
The Advocate noted that although the Ways & Means members agreed to advance the legislation for HB693–extending the temporary sales tax, they weren’t so accomodating on HB615 in regards to raising the gasoline tax.
The article also noted that the legislation went down even after Louisiana Rep. Barbara Freiberg (R-Baton Rouge) stripped out the language dealing with gasoline taxes and left only the portions that would tax electric vehicles at $400 per EV and $275 per hybrid vehicle starting July 1, 2025.
The following text is from the HB615 text document.
“There is hereby levied a tax of four hundred dollars per year on each electric vehicle which is operated upon the highways of this state and which is required to be registered and to pay registration license tax in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 4 of Subtitle II of Title 47 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes 3 of 1950. (2) There is hereby levied a tax of two hundred seventy-five dollars per year on each hybrid vehicle which is operated upon the highways of this state and which is required to be registered and to pay registration license tax in accordance with the provisions of Chapter 4 of Subtitle II of Title 47 of the Louisiana Revised Statutes of 1950.”
So to recap, HB 615 might be on the debate floor tomorrow, May 5, and if so, the fate of EV owners will be in the hands of politicians who would rather see gasoline taxes decrease while EV taxes increased.
Featured image by Johnna Crider.