If you haven't heard about Governor McDonnell's new transportation bill yet, you may want to sit down for this.
To increase transportation funding for the state, VA Governor Bob McDonnell proposed legislation that would eliminate the state gas tax of 17.5 cents a gallon, and raise sales tax instead. And here's the kicker- the bill also calls for a $100 fee on Hybrids and Electric Vehicles.
Clearly, this is yet another assult on people trying to reduce their carbon footprint. That's why today, hybrid owners and climate activists descended upon the State Capitol to give the Governor a piece of their mind. A dozen hybrids with painted windows calling for "No Hybrid Tax" drove around the Capitol honking their horns, as picketers stood armed with signs and windmills, chanting "Tax Pollution, Not Solutions" as the hybrids drove by. Virginia Commonwealth University and Mary Washington students were among the picketers, representing students who are standing up for climate solutions.
In addition to the transportation and energy legislation that would penalize Virginians driving cleaner cars, students and community climate activists were also protesting legislation to roll back other policies meant to promote clean electricity and reduce planet-warming pollution.
The $100 fee, meant to compensate for the smaller taxes hybrid owners pay because of their fuel efficiency, was debunked by a VCU economics professor, Carol Scotese, on the CBS 5 o clock news following the parade and picket. According to the Scotese, comparing a hybrid car that gets 50 mpg to a new sedan that gets 30 mpg, the new sedan pays only $28 more a year in gas taxes--not even close to the $100 fee.
We don't know when the climate attacks in Virginia will stop- but what we do know, is that we'll be there at every turn to fight for a healthy climate, cleaner air, and a greener economy.