Senate expected to pause Build Back Better bill, revised EV tax credits remain in limbo
During a congressional sprint to pass legislation before holiday recess, the US Senate is reportedly planning to put a pin in President Joe Biden’s $1.9 trillion Build Back Better bill to focus on other acts it hopes to pass before 2021’s end. Unfortunately, any delays to the Build Back Better bill means a delay in the proposed revisions to federal tax credits for EV automakers and moreover, US consumers.
It has been a long and arduous journey to enact Biden’s pivotal Build Back Better Act into law, even before the 46th commander-in-chief took office. A major talking point for the Biden administration has been clean energy and federal infrastructure, including electrified government fleets and incentives for EV manufacturers and customers.
The current program offers US consumers up to $7,500 in federal tax credits for EV purchases but limits the incentives for automakers once they exceed 200,000 units sold, throttling money back to US automakers like GM and Tesla.
Since the infrastructure plan was introduced earlier this year, it has faced opposition from conservatives and moderates in Congress and has seen many iterations.
Eventually, Congress’ reform on the bill kept the proposed $12,500 EV tax credit alive by folding it into the Build Back Better Act. As a result, a separate $1.2 trillion infrastructure plan was passed and signed into law by Biden in early November, although the BBB Act remained a work in progress.
The House did its part just weeks later, passing the second, larger half of Biden’s infrastructure bill through to the Senate, where a party line battle was already looming.
There it has sat, and although Biden has often promised to get this bill through before Christmas, it appears that will not be the case.