Electrified Incentives: Your Guide to E-Bike Rebates and Tax Credits
In the nationwide effort to cut traffic and reduce the impact of travel on the environment, e-bikes, once thought of as a niche product, could be about to move more into the mainstream. With governments at the national, state, and city levels enacting incentives to encourage people to switch from four wheels to two, it could soon be easier than ever before to invest in a fun, clean, healthy mode of travel.
In this article, we’ll take a look at the revived interest in a federal e-bike tax incentive, as well as existing e-bike rebates and tax credits around the United States. Let’s get started.
A Look Inside the E-Bike Tax Credit Bill
If you followed the development of the Biden administration’s Build Back Better plan, you might remember something called the Electric Bicycle Incentive Kickstart for the Environment, or E-BIKE, Act. When the plan evolved into the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, the E-BIKE Act wasn’t included.
But in March 2023, California Representative Jimmy Panetta sponsored a revived E-BIKE Act, which, if passed, would introduce a refundable federal tax credit for 30% of the purchase price, capped at $1,500 (up from $800 in the original act), of a new electric bike costing less than $8,000 — or double that of the original proposal. As with the federal EV tax credit, income limits of $300,000 for joint filers and $150,000 for single filers would also apply.
The proposed bill defines eligible e-bikes as those that meet battery safety standards set by the UL (formerly known as Underwriters Laboratories) enterprise, “or such other drive system or battery safety standard as may be recognized by the United States Consumer Product Safety Commission.” The E-BIKE Act is still making its way through Congress. But, given that recent research has shown that 7 in 10 survey respondents are in favor of it, it could make e-bike purchases that much more affordable for all in the near future.
E-Bike Rebates and Tax Credits Across the United States
A growing number of cities, counties, and states are enacting electric bike tax credits and rebates to help buyers save. Here’s a breakdown of what’s available.
Residents of the San Francisco Bay Area, including parts of Alameda, Contra Costa, San Francisco, San Mateo, Santa Clara, and Solano Counties, along with Monterey, San Benito, and Santa Cruz Counties and parts of San Luis Obispo and Santa Barbara Counties can take advantage of a variety of e-bike rebate programs.
California’s E-Bike Affordability Program offers vouchers for up to $1,000 for purchasing a regular e-bike and up to $1,750 for cargo or adaptive e-bikes. Californians who meet certain income requirements can also qualify for up to $250 in additional incentives.
Private businesses and public agencies offer e-bike rebates of up to $200 on qualifying e-bikes in Avon and Edwards, or up to $1,700 for e-bikes bought through bike shops participating in Denver’s municipal rebate program.
Coloradans can receive up to $500 off the purchase of a new e-bike, and the state legislature has approved $12 million in grants for local and tribal governments and nonprofits to fund similar incentives at the local level.
The Connecticut Clean Air Act modifies the Connecticut Hydrogen and Electric Automobile Purchase Rebate (CHEAPR) to include $500 rebates for electric bikes, subject to income requirements and purchase prices of less than $3,000.
Hawaii’s Electric Bicycle and Electric Moped Rebate Program offers a 20% e-bike rebate to residents up to $500.
Minnesota recently approved $4 million for a statewide electric bicycle point-of-sale rebate program. Subject to individual income criteria, the program covers $1,500 or 50-75% of the total cost of a new e-bike and safety accessories, with 40% of the rebates reserved for those with incomes under $41,000.
The city of Ashland offers electric bike rebates worth between $200 and $600 through Ashland Municipal Electric Utility. Eugene Water & Electric Board customers can receive a $300 e-bike rebate within 180 days of purchase.
The city of Corvallis and Benton County offer rebates of up to $1,200 on e-bikes purchased by residents from participating bike shops.
Customers of the Washington Electric Cooperative (WEC) in Montpelier can receive a 50% rebate of up to $200 for new e-bikes. Burlington residents and businesses can get a $200 discount on new e-bikes or conversions under the city’s Try Out program before committing to a purchase.
Vermont Public Power Supply Authority (VPPSA) offers a $100 rebate on e-bike purchases or conversions and accessories for selected areas in northern and central Vermont. Green Mountain Power customers can get a discount of up to $200 on e-bikes purchased from local bike shops. Plus, Vermont Credit Union (VSECU) customers are eligible for discounted rate loans for e-bike purchases.
E-Bike Tax Credits and Rebates: Final Thoughts
There are plenty of ways to offset your purchase of an e-bike in a growing number of areas across the country. Until then, keep up with the latest news on all things electric with evee Life.
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