As GM teeters on bankruptcy and the auto industry as a whole struggles with the economic slowdown, some in the NC General Assembly want to implement new regulations that will drastically increase the price of purchasing a new automobile.
H 1290, introduced by Reps. Pricey Harrison (D-Guilford), Grier Martin (D-Wake), Martha Alexander (D-Mecklenburg), and Tricia Cotham (D-Mecklenburg) would require North Carolina to adopt the same auto emissions rules as California.
These rules would increase the cost of purchasing a new car anywhere from $1,000 to $5,000.
And it's not just the current rules NC would subscribe to. If California increases regulations on emissions or greenhouse gasses, as they've applied to do, those same regulations would go into effect in North Carolina. Basically, we'd be giving up our sovereignty to California to decide for us how best to regulate air quality.
Maybe these House members aren't familiar with basic economics — increasing prices will decrease demand. Not exactly something our economy needs right now.
Declining car sales not only harm our economy, it also harms NC tax revenues, as the sales tax on the purchase of cars (Highway Use Tax) is a major source of funding for the Highway Trust Fund.