VIC Libs Pledge To Pause Electric Vehicle Tax

Victoria's EV tax

Victoria’s unpopular EV tax will take a back seat for a bit if the Liberals/Nationals emerge victorious in next month’s state election.

A user-pays charge was implemented for Victorian-registered zero and low-emissions vehicles (ZLEVs) by the Andrews Government in July 2021; which at the time was described as the “worst EV policy in the world“.

Under the state’s ZLEV Road-User Charge, owners of electric vehicles and hydrogen vehicles (HEVs) were initially charged 2.5 cents per kilometre, and plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) owners 2.0 cents per kilometre travelled. Both charges increased on July 1, 2022 to 2.6 cents per km and 2.1 cents per km respectively. There are some exemptions from the ZLEV Road-User Charge.

Perhaps as a result of backlash against the charge, the Andrews Government introduced a Zero Emissions Vehicle (ZEV) subsidy. The situation had become a case of robbing Peter to pay Peter.

Given the opposition seen, several other states wanting to introduce an EV tax – Western Australia, New South Wales and South Australia – decided it wasn’t the right time and are deferring it to 20271.

And that’s what Victorian Liberal Leader Matt Guy has pledged, announcing yesterday afternoon that under a Liberal/Nationals government the ZLEV Road-User Charge will be paused until 2027. Additionally, 600 new EV charging stations will be established across the state as part of the Coalition’s long-term economic plan for Victoria.

The cost of pausing the EV tax is reportedly $82.2 million (which seems rather high) and for the EV charging station rollout, $50 million.

Labor’s “Back To The Future” Energy Policy Panned

On a related note, the Andrews Government’s announcement last week it would end reliance on privatised coal and transition Victoria to renewable electricity by 2035  is proving to be a hard act to follow. Labor intends reviving the State Electricity Commission (SEC) to build new renewable energy projects.

“Renewable energy is the future: it’s good for our climate, good for lower power bills and good for jobs,” said Premier Andrews. “Labor is doing what matters. We’ll bring power back into the hands of Victorians by creating government-owned energy – keeping bills down and the lights on.”

But the VIC Libs seized on comments from some corners criticising Dan’s plan; and have labeled it a “back to the future energy policy”.

“In contrast, the Liberals and Nationals have a practical and achievable energy plan which will deliver reliable, affordable and increasingly cleaner energy, while keeping the lights on and putting downward pressure on prices.”

The details of that plan can be found here.

It’s 31 days until the Victorian election and pledges to punters are still being made. As election day draws closer, we’ll post of a summary of what Labor, the Liberals/Nationals and the Greens are committing to in terms of renewable energy and electric vehicles here on SolarQuotes. Sign up for the SolarQuotes newsletter to stay informed!

Footnotes

  1. Or in the case of NSW and SA, when electric vehicles make up 30 per cent of all new vehicle sales (whichever comes first)
About Michael Bloch

Michael caught the solar power bug after purchasing components to cobble together a small off-grid PV system in 2008. He's been reporting on Australian and international solar energy news ever since.

Comments

  1. Hi,

    Money lost from EVs not having to pay fuel excise has to be made up somewhere.

    The Libs may “pause” the tax, but it will be back in some form. Eventually. In rego, or some other charges. No matter who is in power. At least the air will be cleaner.

    dRdoS7

    • Money lost from EV owners not having to pay fuel excise is made up with better health and environmental outcomes.

      What is being asked is for EV owners to pay again.

      A better question would be “Why don’t ICE owners have to pay for the health and environmental damage they do?”

      • Hi,

        Yes, long term there are good reasons to go EVs. But, the loss of revenue still has to be made up until those others flow through. We’ll likely be dead before then. Being nearly 70, probably be the generation after my grand-kids that benefit. If the Russian/Chinese/Aliens* haven’t finished us off before then.

        dRdoS7

        • Ronald Brakels says

          This may not be reassuring, but I think we’re the ones most likely to contribute to finishing us off. On the bright side, I think the odds of us actually doing that are low, although we are causing ourselves more trouble than we need to.

        • There is no loss of revenue.

          Currently that revenue goes into a great big bucket from which is drawn monies to pay for health care and roads (amongst many other things).

          Fuel excise goes in, and 100% of it pays for the environmental and health costs associated with the use of said fuels.

          Tell me where the roads money comes from.

    • George Kaplan says

      Agreed dRdoS7.

      Labor’s EV tax is necessary for equitable treatment. Roughly a third of what ICEV drivers pay at the bowser is tax, though truck drivers get most of this back, and those using government or company vehicles can outsource the cost too. EV drivers, who can afford the tax better than most, don’t pay for the road they’re using. Thus a mileage tax. Much as I wouldn’t want to pay one, it seems perfectly fair to me.

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