Publication Detail

Assessing Alternatives to California's Electric Vehicle Registration Fee


Research Report

Plug-In Hybrid & Electric Vehicle Research Center, UC ITS Research Reports

Suggested Citation:
Jenn, Alan (2018) Assessing Alternatives to California's Electric Vehicle Registration Fee. Institute of Transportation Studies, University of California, Davis, Research Report UCD-ITS-RR-18-27

After the Transportation Infrastructure Bill of 2017 (Senate Bill 1) was passed, transportation revenue funding in California was bolstered by numerous fees including gasoline and diesel taxes, as well as an annual registration fee exclusively for zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs). We assess the ability of the ZEV registration fee to provide adequate funding in the future, how the registration fees affect the sales of ZEVs in California, and alternative funding mechanisms instead of the registration fee. We find that the registration fee is not a sustainable mechanism to provide adequate funding as California transitions towards ZEVs. Additionally, the fee detracts from the market adoption of ZEV technologies by as much as a 20% decrease in new ZEV sales. Lastly, we examine alternative funding mechanisms include a fuel tax for hydrogen and electricity, as well as a road user charge (RUC). We find that a ZEV exclusive RUC is the most promising alternative to the ZEV registration fee.

UC ITS Research Report UC-ITS-2018-02