VTrans considers EV user fees to make up for lost gas tax

Published: Sep. 7, 2022 at 2:47 PM EDT
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MONTPELIER, Vt. (WCAX) - As electric vehicles make up a growing share of cars on the road, that means fewer drivers paying Vermont’s gas tax which goes to repair the state’s roads.

The Vermont Agency of Transportation says one-third of state transportation dollars come from taxes on gas and diesel.

The annual deficit of gas tax revenue is a few hundred thousand dollars and that is projected to grow as we reach climate goals around EVs.

To offset that, VTrans is considering a mileage-based user fee on plug-in EVs.

The agency says they are trying to be proactive about maintaining their budget.

VTrans Sustainability and Innovations Project Manager Patrick Murphy says they are still studying how the new system would work, but they do believe it has potential.

“This is the option that has made its way through a steering committee process and it’s because it’s relatively cost-effective but also fair. So, it’s not a flat fee as other states have implemented in the past; it’s targeted toward exactly how many miles people have traveled in their vehicles,” Murphy said.

Murphy says the current state inspection system already tracks mileage data.

In order to be implemented, the new system would have a public comment period and would need to be voted on by the Legislature.