District of Columbia Laws and Incentives

Listed below are the summaries of all current District of Columbia laws, incentives, regulations, funding opportunities, and other initiatives related to alternative fuels and vehicles, advanced technologies, or air quality. You can go directly to summaries of:

State Incentives

Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) and Infrastructure Tax Credit

Businesses and individuals are eligible for an income tax credit of 50% of the incremental or conversion cost for qualified AFVs, up to $19,000 per vehicle. A tax credit is also available for 50% of the equipment and labor costs for the purchase and installation of alternative fuel infrastructure on qualified AFV fueling property. The maximum credit is $1,000 per residential electric vehicle charging station, and $10,000 per publicly accessible AFV fueling station. Qualified alternative fuels include, ethanol blends of at least 85%, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, propane, biodiesel, electricity, and hydrogen. This incentive expires December 31, 2026. (Reference District of Columbia Code 47-1806.12 through 47-1806.13, 47-1807.10 through 47-1807.11, and 47-1808.10 through 47-1808.11)

Reduced Registration Fee for Fuel-Efficient Vehicles

A new motor vehicle with a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimated average city fuel economy of at least 40 miles per gallon (as listed at Department of Motor Vehicles website. (Reference District of Columbia Code 50-1501.03)

Alternative Fuel and Fuel-Efficient Vehicle Title Tax Exemption

Qualified alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs) and motor vehicles with a U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimated average city fuel economy of at least 40 miles per gallon (as listed at www.fueleconomy.gov) are exempt from the excise tax imposed on an original certificate of title. The original purchaser and subsequent purchasers of the same vehicle are eligible the excise tax exemption. The District of Columbia Department of Motor Vehicles determines which AFVs qualify. For more information, see the District of Columbia DMV website. (Reference District of Columbia Code 50-2201.03(j))

Alternative Fuel Vehicle Exemption from Driving Restrictions

Certified clean fuel vehicles are exempt from time-of-day and day-of-week restrictions and commercial vehicle bans, if these vehicles are part of a fleet that operates at least 10 vehicles in the District of Columbia, a Clean Air Act designated ozone nonattainment area. This exemption does not permit unrestricted access to High Occupancy Vehicle lanes, except for covered fleet vehicles that have been certified by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as Inherently Low Emission Vehicles (ILEV) and continue to be in compliance with applicable ILEV emission standards. (Reference District of Columbia Code 50-702 and 50-714)

Laws and Regulations

Alternative Fuel Vehicle Acquisition Requirements

Fleets that operate at least 10 vehicles in the District of Columbia, a Clean Air Act designated ozone nonattainment area, must ensure that 70% of newly purchased vehicles with a gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) of 8,500 pounds (lbs.) or less and 50% of vehicles with a GVWR between 8,500 lbs. and 26,000 lbs. are clean fuel vehicles. For these purposes, a clean fuel is any fuel, including diesel, ethanol (including E85), hydrogen, liquefied petroleum gas (propane), natural gas, reformulated gasoline, or other power source (including electricity) used in a clean fuel vehicle that complies with standards and requirements applicable to such vehicles. Certain exemptions apply. (Reference District of Columbia Code 50-702 through 50-703)

Idle Reduction Requirement

A diesel- or gasoline-powered motor vehicle may not idle for more than three consecutive minutes, except under the following conditions: 1) to operate power takeoff equipment including, but not limited to, cement mixers, refrigeration systems, and delivery vehicles; 2) to operate private passenger vehicles; or 3) to operate heating equipment for five minutes when the ambient temperature is 32 degrees Fahrenheit or below. (Reference District of Columbia Municipal Regulations Title 20, Chapter 9, Section 900.1)

Passenger Vehicle Procurement Requirements

All passenger vehicles the District of Columbia government purchases or leases must have a minimum U.S. Environmental Protection Agency estimated average fuel economy of 22 miles per gallon (as listed at www.fueleconomy.gov) and may not be a sport utility vehicle. Exemptions apply to security, emergency rescue, snow removal, and armored vehicles. (Reference District of Columbia Code 50-203)