Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nev.) joined Senator Debbie Stabenow’s (D-Mich.) Driving America Forward Act, bipartisan legislation to expand the electric vehicle and hydrogen fuel cell tax credits. Under current law, consumers may receive a tax credit of up to $7,500 if they purchase an eligible electric vehicle. However, the tax credits begin to phase out permanently once automakers sell over 200,000 units. The Driving America Forward Act raises the cap and allows purchasers of an additional 400,000 vehicles per manufacturer to be eligible for the tax credit.
“Nevada’s green technology sector is driving innovation in the electric vehicle market and helping lower our carbon emissions. Expanding the tax credits available for electric vehicles means that more Nevadans will be able to afford a cleaner, more efficient car. More electric vehicles on the road not only help us combat climate change, but spur job growth, boost our economy and cement Nevada’s status as the Innovation State and a leader in sustainability.”
In addition to Senators Cortez Masto and Stabenow, U.S. Senators Angus S. King, Jr. (I-Maine), Gary C. Peters (D-Mich.), Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), Margaret Wood Hassan (D-N.H.), Patrick J. Leahy (D-Vt.) and Susan M. Collins (R-Maine) also cosponsored this legislation.
Congressman Dan Kildee (D-Mich.) has introduced the companion version in the U.S. House of Representatives.
Sales of electric vehicles increased by more than 80 percent in 2018, and two manufacturers have already hit the lifetime cap of 200,000 units. Under current law, after an automaker sells 200,000 qualifying vehicles, consumers are eligible to receive the full value of the $7,500 tax credit through the calendar quarter after the cap is hit. The value of the credit to consumers from this automaker then decreases to 50 percent and 25 percent over the next 12 months before being phased out entirely.
The Driving America Forward Act raises the cap by allowing purchasers of an additional 400,000 vehicles per manufacturer to be eligible for a $7,000 tax credit. Consumers can receive the full value of a $7,000 credit through the calendar quarter after the 600,000th vehicle is sold. The value of the credit to consumers from this automaker then decreases to 50 percent before being phased out entirely after six months. The bill maintains the $7,500 tax credit for the first 200,000 units sold. The Drive America Forward Act also extends the hydrogen fuel cell credit for ten years, through 2028.