Mississippi Gov. Tate Reeves will make a decision the destiny of a invoice handed within the state legislature Thursday aimed toward limiting electrical automobile producers from opening new brick-and-mortar dealerships until they agree to the similar rules adopted by way of conventional carmakers.
Introduced within the House in January by way of Rep. Tray Lamar, a Republican from Senatobia, the HB 401 now awaits a call from the state’s Republican governor, who has no longer indicated if he’s going to signal the measure into legislation or no longer.
Shortly earlier than it used to be handed within the Senate on Thursday, the invoice sparked intense debate amongst GOP lawmakers, in keeping with The Associated Press.
Opponents stated it might betray conservative ideas by way of surroundings a central authority coverage that interferes with the car marketplace, whilst supporters stated it might make sure all automobile producers play by way of the similar laws, irrespective of industry fashion.
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Opponents additionally expressed considerations that the invoice, if signed into legislation, would forestall electrical carmakers from bringing new era and jobs to the state.
Republican Sen. Joey Fillingane, of Sumrall, stated the brand new implications may reason Mississippi to fall in the back of different states within the race to draw funding from electrical automobile corporations.
“Maybe we just like being last all the time. Maybe it’s a badge of honor — we’re the last ones to change,” Fillingane stated. “If we’re not careful … we could deprive our citizens of opportunities they really ought not to be deprived of.”
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Tesla has one facility in Mississippi the place shoppers should purchase automobiles in individual, however it’s categorized as a shop and no longer a dealership – a difference that permits the corporate to function outdoor state rules governing franchise companies. If the invoice is signed into legislation, the shop might not be allowed to stick open until it enters right into a franchise settlement.
Sen. Daniel Sparks, a Republican from Belmont, stated the exception offers Tesla, and different electrical automobile corporations taking a look to make the most of it particular privileges that don’t seem to be to be had to standard automakers.
“We’re saying if you choose to have a brick-and-mortar dealership, you have to follow the same laws that everyone else has to follow,” Sparks stated. “Please don’t tell me Tesla’s car doesn’t identify as a car.”
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The invoice, which doesn’t limit the direct sale of electrical automobiles since they are able to be bought on-line, handed in a bipartisan 39-13 vote – with 4 Democrats and 9 Republicans balloting no.
The Associated Press contributed to this file.