On Tuesday, the Oklahoma Supreme Court struck down, in a 6-3 decision, a fee that would have been charged to drivers of electric and hybrid vehicles, declaring it an unconstitutional tax.
Senator Micheal Bergstrom, R-Adair, agrees with the court’s decision.
“The Oklahoma Supreme Court made the right decision here,” said Bergstrom, “but it will cut this year's revenue by about another $400,000, which probably means more cuts in the budget.”
Bergstrom argues that since the legislation was clearly intended to replace revenue with the $100 fee on electric vehicles and $30 on hybrids, it should have required the same 75 percent support in both the House of Representatives and the Senate as required by the state constitution (as amended by the voters in 1992 with State Question 640) for tax increases.
“Those who drive electric vehicles on Oklahoma roads should help pay to maintain those roads, but they don’t since they do not pay fuel taxes like everyone else,” Bergstrom said. “However, this bill should have been passed as a tax and not as a fee.”