City Zipcar Tax Relief in Play
posted by January 17 at 17:15 PMon
As promised, Seattle state Sen. Jeanne Kohl-Welles (D-36), along with Vancouver Rep. Deb Wallace (D-17) has introduced legislation that would exempt carsharing companies such as Zipcar (I’m still having a hard time not calling the merged company “Flexcar”) from the rental-car tax. As I’ve written before, carsharing is not the same thing as renting a car. As Zipcar noted in an e-mail to members,
Car sharing gives members a convenient and cost effective alternative to owning a car. Each car sharing vehicle added to the streets takes approximately 15 privately owned cars off the street, resulting in less congestion and fewer resources dedicated to parking infrastructure. Car sharing members also increase their use of public transit, biking, and walking, while decreasing their car use, helping to conserve fuel and reduce emissions. Washington follows other leading states in making legislative changes to recognize car sharing and its members, including Oregon, Illinois, Massachusetts and others.
The rental-car tax has significantly increased the cost of car-sharing; getting rid of it would eliminate an unfair penalty on people who decide that getting rid of their cars is the right thing to do.