Lucid Motors, Rivian, Tesla, EV Club of CT, and franchised car dealerships discuss bill SB 127 to permit direct sales of EVs in Connecticut

Posted by Paul Braren on Feb 20 2021 (updated on Mar 29 2022) in
  • Efficiency
  • EVs
  • Tesla
  • both
    Come join us on Monday March 22nd!

    Article as it originally appeared below, with the very kind shout-out from CleanTechnica appended, and many other exciting updates too!

    Connecticut State Capitol picture from my speaker confirmation email.

    Summary - see and hear for yourself how this Feb 19 2021 public hearing went, in the video gallery below featuring Automakers, Legislature, EVClub of CT, and Gas Stations. Dealerships are listed here.

    Photo by Paul Braren on Jan 18 2021 at DEEP in Hartford, Connecticut.

    While I've been inside the beautiful Connecticut State Capitol building - once as a kid for a tour, and more recently as an IT Professional installing computer equipment - this wasn't going to be the year for going onsite. When I was asked to give written and maybe even public testimony about my ownership experience with 2 EVs, it was as simple as emailing it in. The confirmation email and unique-to-me Zoom link arrived at 4:02 pm the evening before the event. So the pressure was on. Let's go back a bit to understand why.


    My previous car was a new 2006 Honda Civic Hybrid that I bought right in Hartford, Connecticut. Hybrids had no state tax back then, essentially giving me about $2000 off. Flash forward to 2018, when I ordered my first all electric car, the Tesla Model 3. I quickly learned I had to pick it up in Mt. Kisco, New York. State of Connecticut sales taxes were also collected, and it was deemed too expensive to qualify for any state rebates like CHEAPR. Could it be that my state's incentives to go green were actually going in reverse?

    What does it convey about our state that the top company that engineering students want to work for is not even allowed to sell their products here?

    I love Connecticut, see also my homage to Wethersfield, but I'm well aware that change is sometimes sorely needed.


    Reading tea leaves for signs of intent is what people do. What's Connecticut's intent? For example, years ago, I spied those spiffy and inspiring Massachusetts EV plates when working near Boston. Why doesn't Connecticut have those?

    It's time for change. It was also time for me to learn a little more about how state government actually works.

    About the hearing

    “8 Club Members Go To Hartford” over 2 years ago, a lot has changed since then.

    In the past, public hearings like this would mean that concerned citizens and EV Club of CT members, dealers, and out-of-state auto makers would get to the State Capitol bright and early, advocating for faster adoption of EVs in our state. This time around, the transportation committee opened this live-streamed Zoom meeting to any state resident, dealer, or manufacturer who pre-registered, even me. The topic was SB 127 – Permits Direct Sales of EVs.


    I was nervous when my turn came up at the end of the day, and it showed. But the fun part for me was learning from how well others presented, cordially sticking within their 3 minutes, followed by up to five minutes of surprisingly active Q&A afterward.

    What's at stake here, and why do we care?

    You can't take delivery of a Tesla in Connecticut. No showrooms or stores either, only service.

    Same goes for Lucid Motors and Rivian too.


    But that's not all, Michael Liebow explains in this article excerpt:

    The ICE market crash is coming along with the franchise model. It’s the point when residuals plummet. Compared to Norway with a pop of 5.3 million, 50% EV share or 347k registered. CT has pop of 3.5 million and only 14k registered. We need to reduce friction and encourage change
    Going to any surrounding State to buy an EV is inconvenient but not the end of the world. Being viewed as a laggard, a holdout while the rest of the country sheds a 100-yr old model, that’s the real problem. Send the right message. Lead.

    I encourage you to read the whole thread, pictured at right.

    It was members of the EV Club of CT that helped raise EV manufacturers' awareness of this bill:

    • Proposed S.B. No. 127 | Session Year 2021 |
      To permit electric vehicle manufacturers to sell electric vehicles directly to the consumer.

      General Assembly Proposed Bill No. 127
      January Session, 2021

      Referred to Committee on TRANSPORTATION

      Introduced by:
      SEN. HASKELL, 26th Dist.
      REP. STEINBERG, 136th Dist.


      Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General
      Assembly convened:
      1 That title 14 of the general statutes be amended to permit the
      2 Commissioner of Motor Vehicles to issue a new or used car dealer's
      3 license to an electric vehicle manufacturer, provided such manufacturer
      4 does not have a franchise agreement with any new car dealer in the
      5 state, manufactures only electric vehicles and demonstrates a
      6 sustainable business model for providing service and repairs to such
      7 electric vehicles.

      Statement of Purpose:
      To permit electric vehicle manufacturers to sell electric vehicles directly
      to the consumer.
      LCO No. 259 1 of 2


    There's only a few states left like Connecticut that prohibit direct sales, requiring a franchise in the middle. There's a great Wikipedia entry that explains, with more to this drawn-out saga exposed in journalist David Pogue’s Why you can't buy a Tesla in these states:

    Connecticut has considered letting Tesla enter the state every legislative session since 2014; each time, Fleming has successfully shut the effort down.
    That’s right. In some states, Tesla is not allowed to open dealerships.

    I live in one of them: Connecticut. Two years ago, I added myself to the waiting list for the Tesla Model 3. This summer, I finally picked it up—in New York. As I drove it back home over the state border, I wondered why Connecticut would want to hand over all the sales tax I just paid to a rival state.

    It's a good sign that all three direct-sales EV companies - Lucid Motors, Rivian, Tesla - were well-prepared and well-spoken, patiently staying the whole day to hear out the many business owners and citizens, like myself.

    This is not just a “Tesla bill” anymore, it’s an EV bill.

    President of the EV Club of CT Barry Kresch summarized the day:

    Of the 76 written comments and a full day of Zoom testimony, every consumer that testified was in favor of passing this bill.

    That said, dealership interests are powerful, so who knows how this will turn out. We'll have to wait and see.

    Arguments and FUD

    Click/tap to view Acadia study - "Direct Sales of Electric Vehicles in Connecticut Connecticut is debating whether to allow the direct sales of electric vehicles [EVs] by manufacturers, but concerns have been raised about potential impacts to employment at existing car dealerships. Acadia Center examined auto dealer employment statistics for nearby states that allow direct sales, and the results indicate that there has been no negative impact on this industry’s job levels or trends."

    One argument that popped up was about jobs, see also this detailed study:

    Acadia Center examined auto dealer employment statistics for nearby states that allow direct sales, and the results indicate that there has been no negative impact on this industry’s job levels or trends.

    Tesla has a Service Center in Milford CT, so it seems Lucid Motors and Rivian would want to build service center(s) here too. Prompt service and collision repairs are crucial to improving the ownership experience for any car, things happen no matter what or how you drive.

    Predictably, there was some FUD-slinging during the course of the proceedings. Polite EV owners later chimed in and politely corrected most of the misinformation. For example, Connecticut sales tax is still very much collected when Connecticut buyers get their Teslas in NY, see for yourself, I published our family's delivery papers in this article, showing the 6.35% CT Sales Tax paid..

    Photo by Paul Braren on Oct 22 2020, Old Wethersfield, Connecticut.
    Photo by Paul Braren on Sep 05 2020, Mount Washington Summit, New Hampshire. Half of the energy used going up was used to automatically recharge us on the way down using regenerative braking.

    The world has changed in the 2 years since a similar bill was proposed:

    1. We heard that every year, more and more constituents let their lawmakers know they want to get their EVs in state.
    2. Safe, touchless deliveries were mastered quickly by Tesla, the only US car maker whose sales grew in 2020
    3. Tesla is no longer hovering anywhere near the brink of bankruptcy, that argument is long gone
    4. More no-franchise car dealership businesses are poised to start delivering vehicles this year, such as the Lucid Air and the Rivian R1T pickup truck.
    5. Franchised traditional dealerships are now delivering Ford Mustang Mach-E and VW ID.4, admittedly in limited numbers while production ramps up, and sometimes at elevated prices while demand far exceeds supply.
    6. Nearly all major automotive manufacturers have announced that they are going all in on EVs, and a few have started delivering in volume.
    7. The age of practical EVs with long ranges has arrived.

    Another argument was about franchise dealership's freedom to set prices locally. Lucid, Rivian, and Tesla set prices, and will compete with one another on price and service on a national level. The buyer orders online with no haggling. How many millennials do you know that would just love to argue over the price of one of their biggest purchases?

    There were also discussions around maintenance. As several speakers pointed out, EVs don't need as much maintenance. This is not a Tesla thing, it's an EV thing. A new reality that traditional dealers will need to adapt to.

    Enough of my words, have a listen for yourself, with a wide variety of perspectives.



    I've created a video library of all the key clips that relate to this article.


    Listed in the order they appeared. The transcripts I created below each video are just excerpts, I encourage you to listen to the full 3 minutes of each segment.

    Lucid Motors

    Daniel Witt, Public Policy Lead at Lucid Motors. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 5h 13m 53s.


    I would submit we need not speculate as some have done about the potential ramifications of enacting this law in Connecticut. We can say with certainty that it has resulted in millions of additional dollars of investment and taxes in retail and service locations, as well as the hiring of hundreds of retail and service technicians. And, equally important, more choices for consumers. All without having a detrimental impact on existing franchise dealers or their contractual relationships with the manufacturers that they currently represent. These are the facts, this is not a zero-sum game. It is a net win for consumers and the state.


    Dan West, Director of Public Policy at Rivian. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 6h 39m 30s.


    Allowing direct sales of EVs is the most effective, budget neutral, and market friendly way to accelerate EV adoption. States that allow direct sales have higher EV adoption rates than states with direct sales prohibitions, even in the absence of other incentives. Beyond meeting the state's EV goals, direct sales will bring in new investment from companies like Rivian to hire local contractors construction workers to design and build retail locations. We would also hire local staff, invest in and become part of the community, and pay taxes. Current law deters these investments...


    Zachary Kahn, Senior Policy Advisor at Tesla. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 1h 29m 40s.


    Our mission is to accelerate the world's transition to sustainable energy ... The transportation sector is the largest emitter of greenhouse gasses in the state ... Most recently, Connecticut is one of only 3 states along with the District of Columbia to join the transportation climate initiative program, this was an extraordinary display of leadership and commitment to goal of reducing transportation emissions. This bold policy choice further highlights how out of step the current ban on direct sales from EV manufacturers is with the state's transportation policy goals. The data is clear, making it easier to buy EVs is a key driver of adoption.


    Will Haskell

    Sen. Will Haskell, 26th Dist. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 2h 30m 17s.

    This bill is designed to accelerate electric vehicle adoption by increasing buyer choice. It would welcome a new generation of electric vehicle manufacturers who don't necessarily have that existing franchise dealer relationship in Connecticut.



    Listed in the order they appeared.

    Analiese Paik

    Analiese Paik, Leadership Team of EV Club of CT. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 5h 35m 40s.

    There's actually growth in sales when you allow competition, when you allow direct to consumer sales.

    Analiese then shared a negative Nissan Leaf service experience and a positive Tesla service experiences, and many other very helpful stories and clarifications.

    Paul Braren

    Paul Braren, Wethersfield Connecticut resident, Leadership Team of EV Club of CT. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 6h 52m 02s.

    ... We’re also thankful for the $7500 federal tax credit, and Connecticut’s CHEAPR rebate for $1500, that together made each of these stretch purchases possible for us these past 2 years. I publish a lot about the experiencing of driving these EVs over 40,000 miles, from Canada to DC, mostly for my day job in IT, by far the safest and least cost per mile 4 door sedan choice in the entire automotive market. In my blog, readers first learned about 3rd generation Superchargers, and Tesla picked Connecticut as the first location anywhere in the entire Northeastern US
    Connecticut’s unfortunate stance is only going to get more pronounced as the very promising Rivian and Lucid Motors try to come to market this year, and the optics of Connecticut being so far behind all its northeastern neighbors aren’t good, especially in this age of increasingly influential social media.

    Allowing innovative new companies into the state brings investment and youth into the state. These are forward-looking, environmentally-friendly businesses.

    Barry Kresch

    Barry Kresch, President of EV Club of Connecticut. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 7h 10m 46s.

    Our club supports all EVs. We also support innovation, putting consumers first, and accelerating the rate of EV adoption in the state. SB 127 checks all these boxes.
    The police department in Westport bought a Model 3 which they fully customized for law enforcement, which had to be developed from scratch for the Tesla. The car has been a big hit, and they've received hundreds of inquiries from around the world. The two companies that did this work see a big potential market, and they're Connecticut companies, one is in Chester, the other is in West Haven.

    I learned of Fleet Auto Supply of West Haven, CT and Whelen Engineering of Chester, CT when researching my article about Westport Connecticut's Tesla Police car. Also interesting that
    Westchester County's Hastings-on-Hudson Police Department's new Tesla Model Y was outfitted at Whelen in Connecticut too.


    Michael Frisbee

    Michael Frisbie, Noble Energy Real Estate Holdings. Click/tap to start YouTube video playback at 4h 17m 7s.

    ... what I'm trying to create is build a facility that allows customers to come on property for more than just gas or more than just charging your electric vehicle.

    This is great! On a related note, I've frequently shared my enthusiasm for the convenience of combined convenience store / EV charging, as seen at Sheetz and Wawa, and I had a little fun with Cumberland Farms too.



    My Written Testimonial 2021

    Unedited public record testimony pasted below:

    From: Paul Braren
    Sent: Thursday, February 18, 2021 5:27 PM

    I support SB 127, for direct sales of EVs in Connecticut.

    It will speed the adoption of EVs here, improve the air we breathe, and maybe even make it possible for our small state to meet the goals of the “Electric Vehicle Roadmap for Connecticut” and “Southern New England’s Transportation and Climate Initiative Program”.

    It’s not a good look for CT, being one of very few states remaining where citizens can’t purchase the far-and-away best-selling EVs in the US, made by Tesla in California. They’re far ahead of the rest of the auto industry in meaningfully accelerating the transition to sustainable energy, have passed sales of 1 million EVs last year, are trending toward lowered prices, and are growing production at a rate of 50% per year on average. They’re the only US car company whose sales increased in 2020. Yet, you still can’t get one here.

    Connecticut’s unfortunate stance is only going to get more pronounced as the very promising Rivian and Lucid Motors join Tesla in trying to sell and service EVs here too, only to soon realize how hostile our business environment is to their direct sales. The optics of behind on this aren’t good.

    Like any industry, the EV industry needs healthy competition to accelerate its growth and offer consumer’s more choices. Allowing innovative new companies into the state brings investment and youth into the state. These are forward-looking, environmentally-friendly businesses.

    Thank you for your time and consideration.

    Paul Braren
    Founder of, LLC
    VMware VCP 2681 in 2005, vExpert since 2014
    @paulbraren | LinkedIn
    TinkerTry IT @home. Efficiency, virtualization, storage, backup and more.

    My Written Testimonial 2022

    On Mar 11 2022, I added my unedited public record testimony below:

    From: Paul Braren
    Sent: Friday, March 11, 2022 12:47 PM

    I support SB 214, for direct sales of EVs in Connecticut. My wife and I own our family’s 2 EV home in Wethersfield CT since 1995.

    As an active member of the volunteer leadership of EV Club of Connecticut, and owner and founder of 11 year old “, LLC” where I create hundreds of articles and videos about EVs and sustainability, it gives me great joy to be able to share benefits of EV ownership with my readers and viewers. My wife and I have 60,000 miles of EV experience over these past 3 years, and we now know with absolute certainty that we made the right financial decisions to replace our 30 years of Honda Civics with the most efficient and safest EVs.

    It is with great sadness that I’m witnessing the protectionist, anti-consumer stance dealerships are taking in our state in last-ditch attempts to hold on to their sales and service revenues. Volvo is heading toward direct sales. So is VW. Even Ford sees the writing on the wall, with big implications for dealerships coming whether dealers want to modernize their sales models, or not. Essentially, Ford’s leadership is fed up with huge dealer markups of their EVs tarnishing their brand, see their direct sales competitors (bolded below) that together dominate the top 10 vehicle sales figures for the US in Jan 2022:
    Tesla Model Y - 18,549 (36.8% of all BEVs)
    Tesla Model 3 - 13,604 (27% of all BEVs)
    Tesla Model S - 3,903
    • Ford Mustang Mach-E - 2,781
    • Nissan LEAF - 1,479
    • Hyundai Ioniq 5 - 1,253
    Volkswagen ID.4 - 1,153
    • Kia Niro EV - 1,146
    Tesla Model X - 1,106
    • Porsche Taycan (all versions) - 972

    Money talks, and dealers have $10 billion to protect. I think this recent story at EV Club of CT sums it up best:

    So if the dealers want to come before you and tell you they oppose this bill because they don’t want competition from EV manufacturers, or they don’t give a hoot about lowering emissions or meeting our state’s greenhouse gas targets, or they don’t want to promote job creation from the opening of new EV dealerships, that’s fine. Just please don’t let them tell you they are doing it to protect consumers.

    Please fact check dealership factually incorrect claims, as they conveniently repurpose old dealership laws for their current financial purposes. Lemon Laws protect EVs and gas cars equally. Direct sales companies provide service through a combination of mobile service and service centers. Offering customers a choice of sales model for their EV needs is what SB 214 would finally permit.

    Your Constituents Want To Be Able To Choose Direct Sales
    As for the functionally identical SB 127 last year, it had the support of over sixty residents during last year’s public hearings, myself included, with that testimony also included in my email forwarded below. The only folks not supporting SB 127 were from dealerships.

    As far as Connecticut’s 2030 goals, sales of EVs are significantly lower in states that prevent the direct sale of EVs, and sadly, our CHEAPR EV incentive program is sadly misaligned as well.

    Dealerships’ stance not only adversely affects all our air quality and asthma rates, but it also reveals their true protectionist ways as they engaged in using a lawsuit that’s now been withdrawn for one reason alone: successfully keeping Tesla from opening a legal Service Center in East Hartford near their dealerships, leaving Connecticut with only one Tesla Service Center in Milford CT for the entire state. Given Tesla is by far the #1 seller of EVs in Connecticut, comprising 71% of EVs, Hoffman’s successful protectionism is intended to directly target folks like me, making it far less convenient to occasionally service my two EVs at a facility 45 minutes away, as I tend to drive a lot of miles for my livelihood.

    Sadly, our Connecticut is seen by a variety of reporters globally as rather sadly behind the times, which isn’t exactly an attractive look to businesses looking to open up new energy or EV related businesses in our great little state. There is no evidence of direct sales somehow hurts overall business growth in states, according to the National Automobile Dealer Association, it’s actually been shown to help it.

    Finally, the direct sales model that eliminates the haggling that car shoppers aren’t exactly fond of, especially the younger, typically more environmentally conscious EV shoppers that are our state’s future.

    Thank you for your consideration and time, and feel free to reach out to me for any clarification or questions you may have.


    Paul Braren | @paulbraren
    Founder of - PCs, EVs, home tech, efficiency and more | | Weekly Email | RSS
    Member of the EV Club of CT Leadership Team, Manager of @EVClubCT & EVClubCT Channel
    Member of the Tesla Owners of Connecticut and Tesla Owners Club Eastern New England
    (321)800-8465, please check my availability calendar

    Feb 20 2021 Updates

    Yesterday, Rivian sent Connecticut's reservation holders the following letter. I redacted the name, email address, and some URLs.


    From: Rivian <REDACTED>
    Date: February 19, 2021 at 7:32:39 PM EST
    To: <REDACTED>
    Subject: Working together toward EV ownership in Connecticut.
    Reply-To: Rivian <REDACTED>

    Dear Rivian Community Member,

    Help us ensure your right to buy and take delivery of electric vehicles in Connecticut!

    EV enthusiasts in Connecticut are rallying around SB 127, a bill that would enable Rivian to make vehicle sales directly to customers.

    This bill’s passage means that electric vehicle companies like Rivian will be able to obtain a state dealer license directly. Without this legislation, Rivian and other EV manufacturers won’t be able to open retail sites, offer test drives, or sell directly to consumers. Don’t worry – whether or not this legislation passes, you’ll be able to buy and take delivery of your Rivian! The success of SB 127 simply protects your rights to learn about and purchase EVs in your home state.

    Connecticut’s dealer associations oppose this bill. We’re asking that you and the broader EV community make your support for SB 127 known.

    Here’s how you can help:

    Earlier today, there was a hearing on SB 127. Rivian, other industry members, and interest groups all testified in favor. Please lend your voice by urging your representatives to advance this legislation. The easiest and most effective way to have your voice heard is to email your representative telling them you support this bill.

    Click here to find your representative and email or call saying that you support holding a vote and passing SB 127. If you’re sending an email, please also include Roland Lemar, the Chair of the Transportation Committee, as a recipient. Email:

    To learn more about the benefits of direct sales, please read this blog post by the EV Club of Connecticut.

    Thank you for helping us keep the world adventurous forever.

    Team Rivian

    Mar 10 2021 Update

    • Is This Really Happening – OEMs Bypassing Dealers?
      Volvo Is First Manufacturer to Bypass Dealers for EV Sales

      Mar 03 2021

      When we blogged about the EV Freedom Bill, SB 127, a short while back, one of the facts that we unearthed was that in Germany, Volkswagen had basically given up on its dealerships to sell EVs. It began selling them corporately, using the dealerships as agents. And their strategy worked! The company had a successful introduction of its ID.3 last fall and saw it become a top-selling BEV in Europe. (This car is not being brought to the USA. VW is now taking orders for its larger sibling, the ID.4 in this country.)

      It was an interesting development, but it didn’t necessarily mean that we would see the same thing happen here given franchise laws that are generally more restrictive than in Germany, where manufacturers are allowed to own stores. Well, not so fast. The New York Times reported a story about Volvo announcing a transition to an all BEV lineup by 2030, 5 years sooner than what was viewed as an aggressive announcement by General Motors.


    Mar 17 2021 Update

    The EV Coalition Letter was sent.

    Click/tap to read the full letter.

    March 17, 2021

    Dear Chair Haskell, Chair Lemar, Vice-Chair Cassano, Vice-Chair Simms, Ranking Member Carney, Ranking Member Somers, and Members of the Joint Committee on Transportation:

    As a broad coalition of stakeholders representing electric vehicle (EV) companies, consumer rights, businesses and environmental groups, we write in support of Senate Bill 127, which would allow all manufacturers of EVs to sell their vehicles directly to customers (“direct sales”) in the state of Connecticut.

    Current Connecticut law severely restricts consumer access to EVs in the state by forcing nearly all EV manufacturers to sell through franchised dealers, a century-old business model that is incompatible with the EV business model. As a result, it holds the state of Connecticut back from achieving its emissions reduction goals and fully realizing the benefits of widespread EV adoption: more consumer choice, greater market competition, faster innovation, increased investment, new jobs, and cleaner air.

    The traditional franchise dealership model is optimized to sell gas-powered cars which creates a huge barrier to emerging companies bringing new vehicle technologies to the market. Fortunately, more than half of U.S. states already allow at least one EV manufacturer to apply for and receive a dealer license. In these states, consumers have unfettered access to EVs, and companies can provide a better, more streamlined customer experience.

    Connecticut currently restricts all automotive manufacturers from selling directly in the state, even if they never entered an agreement with franchise dealerships. To reach customers in Connecticut, most EV manufacturers must sell their vehicles online from one of their licensed retail locations outside the state, which creates logistics and paperwork challenges for EV customers in Connecticut. Current Connecticut law does not help franchised auto dealers by keeping competitive vehicles out of the state, it simply shifts jobs and investments to other states and creates unnecessary inconvenience and discouragement for Connecticut residents who want to purchase an EV.

    We strongly believe S.B. 127 is urgently needed and important to pass during the 2021 legislative session. It is a simple fix to existing state law that costs the state nothing, and it meets several important criteria: advancing equity, responding to the COVID-19 pandemic, advancing economic recovery, and addressing the global climate crisis. Below are justifications for how this bill meets these criteria.

    Advancing Equity: Hazardous air pollution from vehicle emissions disproportionally impacts families living near high-traffic zones, which are also low-income communities and communities of color. Accelerating EV adoption will lower emissions in these zones, providing immediate benefit to these families, even if they don’t own an EV. Additionally, allowing direct sales will level the playing field of the consumer by removing layers of subjectivity and implicit bias in the car buying and ownership experience, thereby and advancing social equity among consumers of all races, ages, genders, and backgrounds.

    Advancing Economic Recovery: Succeeding in the global marketplace means investing in
    advanced, clean technologies that keep American industries and American workers globally
    competitive. The American EV industry is driving the transition to a 21st Century clean energy
    economy, attracting new investment and creating new domestic manufacturing jobs all around
    the country. By allowing direct sales, Connecticut can send a strong signal that it wants to be
    part of this new mobility shift. Other states and the rest of the world are moving ahead. If
    Connecticut does nothing to modify its law, investment will land in more EV-friendly states.

    Responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic: The pandemic has dramatically reshaped our buying behavior, including in the car market. Consumer preferences are shifting away from the in-person dealership experience. Allowing direct sales provides customers with an alternative car buying and ownership experience—one that can bring more peace of mind that the shopping and delivery experience was done with minimal contact with others.

    Addressing the Global Climate Crisis: Transportation accounts for the majority of climate-warming emissions, so we must do all we can to reduce transportation emissions. That includes accelerating the adoption of zero-emission vehicles (ZEVs).

    Meeting Connecticut’s ZEV Goals: There are 13,800 registered EVs in the state as of January 2021. According to the ZEV plan, the state has committed to achieving 500,000 registered EVs by 2030. Direct sales is imperative to meeting this objective: 80 percent of EVs are currently sold through direct sales, and states that are open to direct sales see significantly higher EV adoption rates, even in the absence of other EV incentives.

    For these reasons, we strongly urge you to advance S.B. 127 and help move Connecticut’s transportation policy forward.


    Acadia Center
    Becker and Becker Architects
    Connecticut League of Conservation Voters
    Connecticut Sustainable Business Council
    Eastern CT Green Action
    Envest Asset Management, LLC
    EV Club of Connecticut
    Hartford Area Humanists
    Live Green CT
    Lordstown Motors
    Lucid Motors
    Noble Energy Real Estate
    NuPower, LLC
    Plug In America
    Save the Sound
    Sierra Club of CT
    State of Connecticut Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL)
    Tesla Owners Club of Connecticut

    Mar 21 2021 Update

    What a pleasant surprise, to be perusing my RSS feeds then spotting an article on CleanTechnica about SB 127. Nice! So I start to read it, and suddenly I'm finding myself reading my name and article are not just mentioned, but highlighted. Wow, thank you so very much, Johnna Crider!

    • Connecticut’s SB 127 And The Fight For EV Freedom
      Mar 20 2021 by Johnna Crider at CleanTechnica

      Paul also shared his thoughts about the hearing. Due to the pandemic, it was live-streamed through a Zoom meeting to any state resident, dealer, or manufacturer who pre-registered — including him. The topic, he noted, was SB 127 — which permits direct sales of EVs.
      Paul continued with another question that is crucial and drives home a point: “What does it convey about our state that the top company that engineering students want to work for is not even allowed to sell their products here?”


    I also noticed these companies are listed in this image, I added Volvo to this ever-growing list of direct-sales EV makers:

    1. Rivian
    2. Tesla
    3. Lucid
    4. Aptera
    5. Bollinger Motors
    6. Volvo
    Mar 21 2021 - EV Club of Connecticut & Tesla Owners Club of Connecticut perspective on EV Freedom Bill SB 127

    If you're looking for more data on car dealerships, check out dealer data 2012-2019.xlsx, see also NADADATA2019 Annual Financial Profile of America's Franchised New-Car Dealerships.

    I'm working on publishing some other information about responses to those worrying about job loss, here's a sample:

    I do understand and appreciate the dealer's feel they are under threat by the direct to consumer sales model but their own facts don't bear this out. According to the NADA, for the period 2012 to 2019 States that allow direct sales grew dealer employment by 19% whereas states that did not allow direct sales grew by only 14%. Connecticut grew by only 16%. I think there is useful insight here.

    Here is a link to the data from the National Automobile Dealers Association

    Mar 22 2021 Update

    Subject line from testimonials removed, as there was a typo, and they're not recorded in the public record.

    See also at TinkerTry




    See also


    • Rivian Alerts Reservation Holders in CT, Urges Support of SB 127
      Feb 20 2021 by EV Club of CT

      Rivian mobilizes reservation holders for support
      For those holding reservations for an electric pickup truck or SUV from new EV-exclusive manufacturer Rivian, where and how they will get possession of their vehicle when deliveries begin later this year remains unknown.

    • SB 127 Direct Sales Bill Public Hearings Held on 2/19
      Feb 20 2021 by EV Club of CT

      A virtual public hearing was held yesterday by the legislature for this bill. Both written and oral comments were solicited.

      Of the 76 written comments and a full day of Zoom testimony, every consumer that testified was in favor of passing this bill. It is still opposed by dealerships and the OEMs. Nothing has changed.
      It is difficult to read the tea leaves ...

    • It Is Time for EV Freedom
      Jan 08 2021 by Barry Kresch at EV Club of CT

      Governor Lamont has signed onto the Transportation Climate Initiative (TCI), a regional cap and invest plan. At the same time, the state is falling behind the goals set forth in the Multi-State Zero Emission Vehicle Action Plan. The time has come to permit direct sales of EVs in CT.



    • Electric Vehicle Roadmap for Connecticut

      Executive Summary
      The Electric Vehicle Roadmap for Connecticut (EV Roadmap) represents a comprehensive strategy for accelerating the deployment of electric vehicles (EVs) through policies and regulatory tools addressing transportation equity, purchasing incentives, consumer education, charging infrastructure expansion, consumer protection, integration of EVs into the electric grid, utility investment, and utility rate design.

    • Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI)

      About Us
      The Transportation and Climate Initiative (TCI) is a regional collaboration of 12 Northeast and Mid-Atlantic states and the District of Columbia that seeks to improve transportation, develop the clean energy economy and reduce carbon emissions from the transportation sector. The participating states are: Connecticut, Delaware, Maine, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, Vermont, and Virginia.

      The initiative builds on the region's strong leadership and commitment to energy efficiency and clean energy issues, and its programs to reduce carbon emissions in the power sector, which have resulted in the region becoming one of the most energy efficient areas in the nation. At the same time, the effort underscores the sense of urgency shared by all 13 jurisdictions, and their collective aspirations to become the leading region for sustainability and clean energy deployment in the country.

      Recognizing that more than one third of all carbon emissions come from the transportation sector, participating states started taking action through working groups focused on regional priorities, such as clean vehicles and fuels. Several TCI states are also now working together to explore potential regional policies to improve transportation systems and reduce pollution.

    Speaker Order Text, for easy search/reference:

                          Transportation Public Hearing 2/19/21             
                                  Speaker Order             
                                February 19, 2021
    Order First Name Last Name  Organization                            Job Title
    1   Kevin Dillon     Connecticut Airport Authority                Executive Director
    2   John Henshaw & Johnson & david Kooris   Connecticut             Port Authority  "Executive Director & board member"
    3   Kevin Kelly           Senate Republicans                          Senate Republican Leader
    4   Will Haskell         State Senator, 26th District   
    5   Jason Rentkowicz      New Haven Police Department                   Lieutenant
    6   Harry Arora           CGA                                         State Rep
    7   Sen. Paul Formica   CGA                                           Senator
    8   Al Paolillo         Connecticut General Assembly                  State Representative
    9   Michael Passero       City of New London                            Mayor
    10  Anthony Nolan       Connecticut General Assembly                  State Representative
    11  Keith Hedrick     City of Groton                                Mayor
    12  Matthew Lesser    CGA                                         State Senator
    13  Zachary Kahn        Tesla                                       Senior Policy Advisor
    14  Greg Allard       Association of CT Ambulance Providers       President
    15  Jeff Hugabonne    Connecticut Broadcasters Association" 
    16  Jeff Aiosa        Connecticut Automotive Retailers Association" Legislative Co-Chair
    17  Terry Poley     
    18  Karl Jacobson       New Haven Police Department                 Assistant Chief
    19  Chrissy Monaco    Monaco Ford                                 Co-Owner
    20  Rob Glaspy  CAPE    
    21  Samantha Dynowski Sierra Club CT                                State Director
    22  William Hughes    Retired   
    23  Michael Frisbie   Noble Energy Real Estate Holdings           Owner
    24  Zell Steever        Groton Resiliency and Sustainability Task Force Chairman
    25  James Furlong       Groton Conservation Advocates                 Writer
    26  Christopher Regan Sr        
    27  Steve Taranko       
    28  Charles Rothenberger Save the Sound Climate & Energy Attorney
    29  Peter Jones         None                                          Retired
    30  Kim Curtin        Curtin Transportation                         Owner
    31  Debbie DiAngelo     
    32  Daniel Witt         Lucid Motors                                  Public Policy Lead
    33  Michael Liebow      
    34  Analiese Paik       
    35  Anthony LaPenta     
    36  Sandy Duffy     
    37  Hayden Reynolds     Reynolds Subaru 
    38  Dan West            Rivian                                      Director of Public Policy
    39  Christopher Fryxell Associated Builders & Contractors President
    40  Seth Totten     
    41  Yvette Sanchez    Gengras Motor Cars    
    42  Paul Garavel        Garavel Chrysler, Jeep Dodge RAM            President
    43  Paul Braren, LLC  "Efficiency-themed blogger & videographer"
    44  Wayne Weikel        Alliance for Automotive Innovation          Senior Director
    45  Frank Gasparro    Hamden Hall Country Day School
    46  David Fay           The Bushnell Center for the Performing Arts President and CEO
    47  Katherine Stainken  Plug In America                             Policy Director
    48  Suzanne Ellery    Pfizer, Inc                                 Site Affairs Lead
    49  Aetna Ambulance Service Mara    Aetna Ambulance Service         EMT Supervisor Aetna Ambulance Service
    50  JAMES FEEHAN        NEFEA                                       President
    51  Clifton Vachon      
    52  Rahul Shah      
    53  Barry Kresch        EV Club of CT                               President
    54  Chip Gengras        Gengras Motor Cars