What I would like to see in the next Virginia Energy Plan is a recognition of Virginia's need for energy independence in a changing and fractious world. We can do no better than by making Electric Cars more affordable in the Commonwealth. We currently have grandfather clauses which prevent newer, purely electric, zero-emission vehicles from accessing the full range of roads allowed for prior to 2006 just because these vehicles didn't come about until later. The current system of transferring older plates to yet another hybrid is bad for Virginia because it encourages the use of inefficient Hybrid vehicles when pure electric and plug-in hybrid cars use less to no petroleum and produce little to no emissions at the site of the vehicle, which means no harmful exhaust where our children play in are homes and schools. The Clean Fuel plates should no longer be allowed on Hybrid. You should be required to get an electric car to keep your plates and the best plates should go to the battery electric and plug in hybrids.
What's more, the $64 a year paid by electric cars is outrageous. This isn't a question of having electric cars pay their fair share in road taxes. This tax is clearly a hybrid subsidy when a hybrid vehicle that gets 50 mpg is only expected to pay $32 per year in fuel taxes compared to an electric car's $64. Again, Virginia needs to look forward and end these hybrid subsidies and electric vehicle onerous taxes. If electric cars are to pay fuel taxes, and I personally think they should, then those taxes should be smaller than those paid by the best hybrid, closer to $16 per year, not $64. Or simply do away with fuel taxes and just tax cars by mileage and weight as that's really what's needed to keep our roads safe and properly surfaced.
Finally, we need to make solar power easier in Virginia. As the Federal Subsidies sunset, Virginia needs to step up its game. For too long we have lagged behind both Maryland and North Carolina. We have a lot of sun in Virginia, an untapped resource that democratizes our energy system. The more we distribute our energy production, the more resilient we are when disaster strikes. Increased Solar access and availability at an affordable price is key to this.