New Texas law will charge electric vehicle drivers an extra $200 fee when renewing their vehicle registration

Rep. Robert Nichols authored this bill
Three Tesla chargers are located in Lindale.
Three Tesla chargers are located in Lindale.(Source: KLTV staff)
Published: Aug. 29, 2023 at 9:15 AM CDT
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LINDALE, Texas (KLTV/KTRE) - A new law is going into effect this week that will bring additional fees to owners of electric cars across the Lone Star state.

Texas has more than 20,000 electric vehicles that is according to data compiled by Dallas-Forth Worth Clean Cities, a coalition created by the U.S. Department of Energy.

”It’s just important for people in East Texas and West Texas or Dallas or Houston,” said Sen. Robert Nichols of Jacksonville.

Sen. Nichols authored Senate Bill 505 during the regular session, to fill the gap in revenue that was not being received.

“So what is the impact to the state of Texas as the number of electric vehicles increases and the one thing that came out was the loss of revenue of fuel tax,” said Nichols.

The registration fee is meant to make up for loss of income from gas taxes, which are used to pay for road construction and maintenance across the Lone Star state.

“Most people want roads to be taken care of, it’s a safety issue more than anything else,” said Nichols.

Electric vehicle drivers do not pay gas taxes since they do not use gasoline, that’s where this new law comes into play.

  • Electric car drivers will be charged an additional fee of $200 dollars when renewing their registration.
  • If you buy a new electric car, you will have to pay two years of registration upfront, which is $400 dollars.

For some, this could be a deterrent to buying a new car but for others, the benefits of having an electric car overcome this new fee.

“I do drive a good bit from here to the metro. On gas alone, I was paying $700 more on gas a month on this is definitely cheaper,” said Thad Crawford a Tesla owner.

Crawford says even though he will be paying a little bit more of a flat rate he knows the money is going back into the roads he drives on.

“The gas tax is obviously how the state gets money to repair the roads and they need repairs, so I understand paying our fair share,” said Crawford.

He is one of many East Texans that own an electric vehicle.

According to data collected from a coalition created by the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE):

  • •Smith County has 702 electric vehicles
  • Gregg County has 273
  • Angelina County has 118
  • Nacogdoches County has 101