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If the Murphy administration’s ban on the sale of new gas-powered vehicles is adopted, many residents will be unable to afford electric vehicles, and there will be repercussions for both electric grid stability and the state’s Transportation Trust Fund that pays for highway repairs, NJBIA President & CEO Michele  Siekerka told Alex Zdan on News 12 New Jersey’s latest episode of Power and Politics. 

The proposed rule, which the administration intends to adopt before the end of the year without legislative input, would require electric vehicles (EVs) to comprise 43% of new car sales by 2027 and 100% by 2035. Currently, EVs comprise only 8% of new car sales. 

“What’s so problematic about these vehicles is, No. 1, they aren’t affordable yet,” Siekerka said, noting that low- and middle-income people, especially families who need larger cars, will be completely priced out of the new car market because of the high cost of mid-size EVs compared to gas-powered cars.  

“No. 2, we still have consumer anxiety about these cars, and we don’t have infrastructure to support it,” she said. “New Jersey is the most dense state in the nation and we have people who live in high rise apartments and who park on streets” who would have difficulty finding places to charge their vehicles. 

Siekerka also questioned how the electrical grid will support hundreds of thousands of EVs if this mandate is adopted. 

The third issue that is being overlooked is the future funding of the state’s Transportation Trust Fund that pays for highway infrastructure repairs and is now financed by a gasoline tax that by law must increase whenever gas tax revenue dips. Owners of EVs don’t pay the gas tax, even though they use the same highways, so that means the owners of gas-powered vehicles will be paying higher gas taxes. 

“What we’re doing is we are laying more of the tax on fewer people who are still driving the (gas) cars they can afford,” Siekerka said. “That doesn’t sound too fair to me.” 

To watch the entire “Power and Politics” segment that aired last weekend about the proposed EV mandate, go here.