State’s Proposed Gas Tax Bill Places Fees on Electric, Hybrid Car Owners

 ========= Old Image Removed =========Array
(
    [_wp_attached_file] => Array
        (
            [0] => 2019/03/IMG_7978-scaled.jpg
        )

    [_wp_attachment_metadata] => Array
        (
            [0] => a:6:{s:5:"width";i:2560;s:6:"height";i:1920;s:4:"file";s:27:"2019/03/IMG_7978-scaled.jpg";s:5:"sizes";a:14:{s:6:"medium";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-336x252.jpg";s:5:"width";i:336;s:6:"height";i:252;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:5:"large";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-771x578.jpg";s:5:"width";i:771;s:6:"height";i:578;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:9:"thumbnail";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-140x140.jpg";s:5:"width";i:140;s:6:"height";i:140;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:12:"medium_large";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-768x576.jpg";s:5:"width";i:768;s:6:"height";i:576;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:9:"1536x1536";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:22:"IMG_7978-1536x1152.jpg";s:5:"width";i:1536;s:6:"height";i:1152;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:9:"2048x2048";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:22:"IMG_7978-2048x1536.jpg";s:5:"width";i:2048;s:6:"height";i:1536;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:9:"wbhm-icon";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:18:"IMG_7978-80x80.jpg";s:5:"width";i:80;s:6:"height";i:80;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:13:"wbhm-featured";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-600x338.jpg";s:5:"width";i:600;s:6:"height";i:338;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:20:"wbhm-featured-square";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-600x600.jpg";s:5:"width";i:600;s:6:"height";i:600;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:18:"wbhm-featured-home";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-415x311.jpg";s:5:"width";i:415;s:6:"height";i:311;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:22:"wbhm-featured-carousel";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-353x265.jpg";s:5:"width";i:353;s:6:"height";i:265;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:28:"ab-block-post-grid-landscape";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-600x400.jpg";s:5:"width";i:600;s:6:"height";i:400;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:25:"ab-block-post-grid-square";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-600x600.jpg";s:5:"width";i:600;s:6:"height";i:600;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}s:14:"post-thumbnail";a:4:{s:4:"file";s:20:"IMG_7978-125x125.jpg";s:5:"width";i:125;s:6:"height";i:125;s:9:"mime-type";s:10:"image/jpeg";}}s:10:"image_meta";a:12:{s:8:"aperture";s:1:"0";s:6:"credit";s:0:"";s:6:"camera";s:0:"";s:7:"caption";s:0:"";s:17:"created_timestamp";s:1:"0";s:9:"copyright";s:0:"";s:12:"focal_length";s:1:"0";s:3:"iso";s:1:"0";s:13:"shutter_speed";s:1:"0";s:5:"title";s:0:"";s:11:"orientation";s:1:"0";s:8:"keywords";a:0:{}}s:14:"original_image";s:12:"IMG_7978.jpg";}
        )

    [_media_credit] => Array
        (
            [0] => Janae Pierre
        )

    [_navis_media_credit_org] => Array
        (
            [0] =>  WBHM
        )

    [_navis_media_can_distribute] => Array
        (
            [0] => 
        )

)
1565939784 
1551897717

State lawmakers went into special session Wednesday to consider a proposed gas tax increase to fund road and bridge construction. The bill would impact all motorists — but some would pay significantly more than others.

Gov. Kay Ivey’s proposed bill would increase the state’s gas tax by 10 cents a gallon. But one part of the bill has gotten a lot of attention lately: drivers of electric and hybrid vehicles pay additional fees compared to regular vehicle owners. State Sen. Del Marsh supports the bill.

“What we’ve done is just basically say let’s bring electric vehicles and parallel them with what people are paying on gas-burning cars and that number of 75 and 200 are in line with that,” he says.

That’s $75 dollars in extra fees for hybrid owners. Drivers of electric cars will pay an extra $200. Marsh says the additional fees are fair.

Here’s the rationale: drivers of fuel-efficient cars buy less gas. So charging them more is a way to make it so that all drivers contribute to this infrastructure fund. It makes it so that all drivers have to pay to use the roadways. Critics see it as punitive toward hybrid and electric car owners. They say electric vehicles don’t put as much wear and tear on the roads because they tend to be lighter. 

In addition to road and bridge projects, a portion of those state tax dollars would go toward more charging stations across the state.

Marsh says “once adequate infrastructure is met, the fee on that drops, but we want to create that infrastructure for electric vehicles.”

The fee would decrease once the gas tax hike is phased in over three years. Marsh says the state expects more electric vehicles on the roads in coming years.

As the special session continues, he says more changes are expected to be made to the draft bill.  

If the bill passes, Alabama would join 20 other states that charge fees ranging from $50 to $200 on hybrid and electric vehicles, according to the National Conference of State Legislatures.  

 

Local health officials plan to increase monkeypox vaccinations

Health officials will soon begin offering intradermal vaccinations, reaching more people with less vaccine.

Combating gun violence remains a top focus of the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

As violent crime in Birmingham and the surrounding area continues to increase, the U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Alabama, Prim Escalona, uses a variety of tools and strategies to get firearms and bad guys off the street.

Some 3rd graders in local schools could be held back under new law 

This is the first school year that third graders who do not read at grade level by the end of the school year must be held back in that grade, rather than passed on to fourth grade. The Alabama Literacy Act was passed several years ago, but its implementation was delayed because of the pandemic.

How one Birmingham custodian preps for the first day of school

When the kids are away, the custodial and maintenance staff in schools work all summer long. One custodian told WBHM about what it takes to keep the kids happy and healthy as they trade sunshine for fluorescent lights.

Dollar store workers are organizing for a better workplace. Just don’t call it a union.

Fired up by a labor movement that’s seen big union victories recently, dollar store workers are organizing in their own way to improve work conditions.

Bill Clark has a knack for making comebacks. Will he make one more? 

Bill Clark has had to overcome some serious hurdles during his career at UAB, as well as in his personal life. He not only resurrected a football program that had been neglected—and then out-right killed—he’s also been fighting through what he’s called a serious injury since childhood.

More 2019 Legislative Session Coverage