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Obama’s budget calls for 75 percent increase in vehicle research funding

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Politics,Beltway Confidential,Michal Conger

President Obama’s 2014 budget proposal calls for higher spending on electric vehicles, including a 75 percent increase in funding for electric vehicle research.

The president’s budget allocates $575 million to to increase the “affordability and convenience” of environmentally-friendly vehicles and domestic renewable fuels, in addition to the $2 billion Energy Security Trust designed to get cars and trucks off oil. “Funding supports the EV Everywhere initiative, a targeted effort to make electric-powered vehicles as affordable and convenient as gasoline-powered vehicles for the average American family within a decade,” according to the budget.

As part of his goal to make plug-in vehicles cheaper, Obama proposed expanding the $7,000 tax credit for electric vehicles to $10,000. His proposal would allow dealers to claim the credit, as a way of allowing owners to get the credit at the time of the purchase rather than when they file their tax return.

Obama called in 2008 for 1 million plug-in electric vehicles to be on the roads by 2015. But analysts think that goal may be almost impossible, according to the Detroit News, because only about 70,000 plug-in vehicles have been sold in the United States since 2011. The president also proposed competitively selected “advanced vehicle deployment communities,” which would test approaches to using the vehicles in specific communities. Budget proposals are subject to approval by Congress, but not a single member of Congress voted in favor of the president’s last two budgets.
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