OLYMPIA, Wash. (AP) — Washington Gov. Jay Inslee on Monday announced several climate related proposals for the next legislative session, including a plan to offer rebates for new and used electric vehicles, on top of the sales tax exemption that currently exists for such vehicles in the state.
Under the proposal, rebates of up to $7,500 would be available for new electric sedans listed under $55,000 and $80,000 for new vans, sport utility vehicles and pickup trucks. The rebate drops to $5,000 for used vehicles, and a $1,000 rebate would be offered for zero-emission motorcycles and e-bikes. People would be eligible for rebates if they make under $250,000 a year, or under $500,000 a year for joint tax filer households.
Low-income drivers — individuals with an income of below $61,000 — would be eligible for an additional $5,000 rebate toward the purchase of a new or used electric vehicle.
Since August 2019, the state has had a sales and use tax exemption for alternative fuel and certain plug-in hybrids sold or valued at $45,000 or less if new and $30,000 or less if used.
Inslee's also looking to expand clean building requirements and bolster the workforce for clean energy jobs, and he said his plan looks to reduce the state's annual emissions by 6 million metric tons a year in order to hit targets set in state law.
“Climate change is moving faster and therefore we must move faster,” Inslee said at a news conference to announce his plan.
“We have to up our game.”
Inslee’s climate proposal also looks to do the following:
The overall price tag for Inslee's climate proposals is $626 million, which he said would come out of existing state revenues.
Monday's announcement was the first of a handful of policy announcements ahead of Inslee releasing his state supplemental budget Thursday. The Democratic-controlled House and Senate will each present their own budget proposals during the 60-day legislative session that begins Jan. 10.