Vol. 34 - August 2022 | ©2022 by Vidal, Nieves & Bauzá, LLC. All rights reserved.
Electric vehicle or EV sales in the US Mainland and in Puerto Rico have continuously increased year after year, creating the need to install more EV charging stations across the Island. The increased sales of EVs, is driving the urgent need for EV charging infrastructure, albeit lacking a clearly defined legal platform for required permit, property and use rights limitations in condominiums, among other legal and policy challenges. This News & Alerts briefly discusses the recent developments at the federal and state level associated with EVs.
Excise Tax Breaks
Act No. 81 of 2014, also known as the “Act for the Promotion of Vehicles Driven Mainly by Electricity”, amended the Puerto Rico Internal Revenue Code of 2011 (the “Code”) to provide the total exemption from the payment of excise taxes for EVs available until 10% of the total number of automobiles introduced from abroad or manufactured in Puerto Rico are vehicles powered mostly by electricity (i.e., electric, plug-in hybrid or plug-in vehicles).
PR Laws & Bills for EV Charger Installation
Act No. 81-2014 also provides certain general rules for the establishment of EV charging stations in condominiums. Act No. 81-2014 provides the Board of Residents the authority to regulate the manner of installation, maintenance and use of charging stations in individual parking lots. Most recently, on May 11, 2022, House Bill 1354 was filed to amend Act No. 81-2014 to establish new rules on the installation, use and management of recharging stations for EVs in
common parking lots of condominiums. House Bill 1354 is yet to continue its course through the legislative process.
EV Charger Infrastructure
On August 26, 2021, the Puerto Rico Energy Bureau (“PREB”) issued a Resolution and Order in Case NEPR-MI-2021-0013, In Re: Deployment of Electric Vehicle Charger Infrastructure, initiating an administrative proceeding for the purpose of evaluating issues related to the deployment of EV charger infrastructure in Puerto Rico. On November 18, 2021, the PREB established the Principles to guide the adoption of plans, regulations and procedures to effectively regulate the EV industry and the EV infrastructure deployment in Puerto Rico. The PREB has expressed that they are currently working on several public policy initiatives.
Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act
In November 2021, President Joe Biden signed into law the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, which provides $7.5 billion in federal funding to be allocated over five years for EV charging infrastructure in the states, including Puerto Rico. Although specific disbursement guidelines are yet to be published, the automotive and energy industries, are gearing to deploy resources to maximize the benefits of programs developed under this Act.
Should you or your company have any questions with respect to the deployment of the EV charger infrastructure in Puerto Rico, you may contact the attorneys at Vidal, Nieves & Bauzá, LLC, a corporate law firm with special emphasis in energy and environmental matters, corporate, tax, transactional, real estate and insurance practices.