Virginia Strikes Down California ICE Ban

Virginia is the first state to reject the 2035 gas/diesel vehicle ban...

Virginia Gov. Glenn Youngkin announced that the Commonwealth would not adopt California’s 2035 ban on selling new gas- and diesel-powered motor vehicles, in a move supported by the Specialty Equipment Market Association (SEMA).

“Seventeen states have attached themselves to California’s emissions standards over the past 20-plus years. Nine states have passed laws and/or resolutions rejecting government deciding what technology American consumers must purchase and buy,” said SEMA President and CEO Mike Spagnola. “Virginia is now the first state in the nation to untangle itself from California’s emissions standards and EV mandates. We applaud Gov. Youngkin for this bold action that rejects the notion that California should determine policies for nearly half of American consumers.”

Virginia Strikes Down California ICE Ban | THE SHOP
Photo Courtesy: Red Dot

Virginia lawmakers passed a law in 2021 under Youngkin’s predecessor tying the state to California’s emissions standards, which includes California’s 100% EV mandate by 2035. Since then, SEMA-supported bills aiming to repeal the law have narrowly failed to pass the Democratically controlled legislature.

Elected in 2021, Youngkin campaigned on repealing California’s standards and pledged to follow through during his 2023 State of the Commonwealth address.

“It defies common sense that in 2021, lawmakers decided that instead of writing our own electric vehicle laws, Virginia would simply do whatever California decided to do,” said Youngkin. “Unless we act, Virginia is hostage to the policies of California. Common sense says that the law of Virginia should be written by elected leaders here, not outsourced to bureaucrats.”

SEMA has led the charge to pass laws and/or resolutions in nine states that would outlaw states and local governments from mandating a singular vehicle technology over others and protect the American consumer’s right to choose the vehicle technology that best suits them and their families. SEMA’s efforts also led to the successful delay in the adoption of California’s ICE ban in Connecticut and Maine earlier this year.

Pat Curtin

Pat Curtin is the managing editor of THE SHOP magazine.

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