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Montana 2021 Legislature

Gianforte Vetoes Bill Establishing Electric Vehicle Fees

A red Tesla zooms down a tree lined road. The greenery is blurry.
U.S. Department of Energy via Flickr https://bit.ly/3hIhUHg
According to Tesla, the Model S all-electric car is one of the fastest sedans in the world. Photo | Tesla

Montana Gov. Greg Gianforte Thursday vetoed a bill to establish additional state fees for electric vehicles. He says the policy would be bad for business.

Gianforte wrote in his veto letter that he could not support passing such high charges for electric vehicles although he agrees that electric vehicles should pay state fees like other cars.

The legislation would have set an additional $195 charge for light electric vehicles and $375 for heavy electric vehicles like trucks

Around half of U.S. states charge an additional fee on all-electric vehicles ranging from roughly $50 to $200. Supporters say the fees help pay for road maintenance that other cars pay into with gas taxes. Opponents of the additional fees on electric vehicles say they are a disincentive for the electric vehicle industry.

“I don’t believe Montana wants to be seen as unfriendly to emerging industries, and unfortunately this bill is very unfriendly,” Democratic Sen. Shane Morigeau of Missoula said during debate on the bill.

In his veto letter, Gianforte says the policy would have established some of the highest fees on electric vehicles in the nation.