Senate bill would give electric cars a $10 billion boost

Residents of deployment communities would be eligible for point-of-sale rebates of up to $10,000 when purchasing an electric vehicle. The bill also extends the nationwide tax credit — currently capped at $7,500 — and expands it to include medium- and heavy-duty hybrid vehicles. 

Additionally, the bill provides $1.5 billion to research lowering battery costs and extends the 50 percent tax credit for communities that buld charging stations. A Senate aide said communities often require significant upgrades to their power grids to meet the increased demand of electric vehicles. That generally includes increasing the number of transformers and power lines locally.

Reps. Edward MarkeyEdward (Ed) John MarkeyDemocratic White House hopefuls push to expand health care in US territories Democratic White House hopefuls push to expand health care in US territories Hillicon Valley: Democratic state AGs sue to block T-Mobile-Sprint merger | House kicks off tech antitrust probe | Maine law shakes up privacy debate | Senators ask McConnell to bring net neutrality to a vote MORE (D-Mass.), Judy Biggert (R-Ill.), Jerry McNerney (D-Calif.) and Anna Eshoo (D-Calif.) introduced a similar bill in the House on Thursday, though the aide said the House bill is slightly more expensive at $11 billion and includes different funding for research and a separate set of incentives.

David Friedman, research director of the Union of Concerned Scientists' Clean Vehicles program, said the House bill "moves electric drive technologies into the fast lane."