This year has been incredibly challenging for many people. This year also saw the rise of a new anti-EV bill, as many refer to it, in Michigan.
Earlier this month, the Michigan House of Representatives passed a new bill that would prohibit Tesla from operating sales and services centers in the state while also blocking EV startups such as Rivian and Lucid from operating. If it would have passed, the bill would have reversed a settlement earlier this year that allows Tesla to operate in the state. Also, if the bill had passed, it would have strengthened dealer franchises in the state while preventing Tesla, Rivian, Lucid, and other EV startups from selling directly to their customers — something that dealerships don’t really jibe with.
The bill was introduced by Representative Jason Sheppard, a Republican who received donations to his campaign from General Motors, Ford Motor Company, Auto Dealers of Michigan, and DTE Energy company — just to name a few. Although I am sure he isn’t the only politician to receive donations from Tesla’s competitors, if I was a Michigan resident, I’d be a bit unnerved at the fact that one of my representatives put forth a bill to undo something that was settled in the courts already — something that would have benefitted some of his donors if that bill had gone through, but not the people of the state.
The Michigan State Senate decided to leave Michigan House Bill 6233 off its schedule, which is what killed the legislation, according to RoadShow by CNET. Lucid Motors, one of the automakers that would have been blocked from operating in Michigan, gave a statement:
“Lucid Motors is pleased that HB 6233 failed after the Michigan Senate ended its session without taking action on the bill. The legislation passed by the Michigan House of Representatives was anticompetitive and undermined consumers’ access to different products and consistent, dependable automotive service. These legislative efforts — and similar efforts in other states — are clearly driven by special interests, not consumers, as nearly 70% of all EVs sold in Michigan in 2019 were sold directly to consumers.”
Even though this bill is dead, Lucid expects that the Michigan legislature won’t give up so easily. However, it remains confident that state leaders will make the right decisions for their constituents and encourage economic growth.