Utah Laws and Incentives for Vehicle Owner/Driver

The list below contains summaries of all Utah laws and incentives related to Vehicle Owner/Driver.

State Incentives

Alternative Fuel and Fuel-Efficient Vehicle Tax Credit

The state provides an income tax credit of 35% of the vehicle purchase price, up to $2,500, for an original equipment manufacturer compressed natural gas (CNG) vehicle registered in Utah. It also provides an income tax credit of 50% of the cost to convert a vehicle to run on propane, natural gas, or electricity, up to $2,500. Retrofitted CNG vehicles are also eligible for the credit if they meet the National Fire Protection Association Vehicular Gaseous Fuel Systems Code 52 and satisfy the emissions standards for the county in which the retrofitted vehicle is registered; or for the county in the state with the least stringent emissions standards. Other new clean fuel vehicles that meet air quality and fuel economy standards may be eligible for a credit of $605, including certain electric and hybrid electric vehicles.

These incentives expire December 31, 2014. See the Clean Fuel Vehicle Tax Credit website for eligible vehicles, restrictions, and additional information. (Reference Utah Code 19-1-406, 59-7-605, and 59-10-1009)

Point of Contact
Mat Carlile
Clean Fuel Tax Coordinator
Utah Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Air Quality
Phone: (801) 536-4136
Fax: (801) 536-0085
mcarlile@utah.gov

Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) and Fueling Infrastructure Grants and Loans

The Utah Clean Fuels and Vehicle Technology Grant and Loan Program (Program), funded through the Clean Fuels and Vehicle Technology Fund, provides grants and loans to assist businesses and government entities in covering:

  • The cost of converting vehicles to operate on clean fuels;
  • The incremental cost of purchasing original equipment manufactured clean fuel vehicles;
  • The cost of retrofitting diesel vehicles with U.S. Environmental Protection Agency verified closed crankcase filtration devices, diesel oxidation catalysts, and/or diesel particulate filters; and
  • The cost of fueling equipment for public/private sector business and government vehicles (grants require federal and non-federal matching funds).
The Program does not support E85 or biodiesel projects. For the purpose of the Program, clean fuels include propane, compressed natural gas, and electricity. For more information, see the Utah Clean Fuels and Vehicle Technology Grant and Loan Program website. (Reference Utah Code 19-1-401 through 19-1-405)

Point of Contact
Lisa Burr
Clean Fuel Vehicle Grant and Loan Coordinator
Utah Department of Environmental Quality, Division of Air Quality
Phone: (801) 536-4019
Fax: (801) 536-0085
lburr@utah.gov

Alternative Fuel Tax Exemption

Propane, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, and electricity used to operate motor vehicles are exempt from state fuel taxes. The Utah Revenue and Tax Code allows a reduction of motor and special fuel taxes if the motor or special fuel is already taxed by the Navajo Nation. Retailers, wholesalers, and suppliers of special fuel are eligible for a refund of the special fuel tax if dyed diesel fuel is mixed with special fuel and the mixed special fuel is returned to the refinery for re-refining. For more information, see the Utah State Tax Commission Fuel Taxes website. (Reference Utah Code 59-13-102, 59-13-201, 59-13-301, and 59-13-322)

Point of Contact
Utah State Tax Commission Motor Vehicle Division
Phone: (800) DMV-UTAH or (801) 297-7780
dmv@utah.gov
http://dmv.utah.gov/

Alternative Fuel Vehicle Decal and High Occupancy Vehicle (HOV) Lane Exemption

Vehicles operating on propane, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, or electricity are permitted to use HOV lanes, regardless of the number of passengers. Qualified vehicles must display the special clean fuel decal issued by the Utah Department of Transportation (UDOT); a limited number of decals are available. For more information about qualifying vehicles and decal availability, see the UDOT Clean Fuel Vehicle Decal and Permit website. (Reference Utah Code 41-1a-416, 41-1a-418, 41-6a-702, 59-13-102, and 72-6-121)

Laws and Regulations

Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Vehicle Aftermarket Conversion Requirements

Vehicles converted to operate on CNG must be inspected and certified in accordance with relevant safety standards by a CSA America-certified CNG Fuel System Inspector. The vehicle must also be tested to ensure that it meets emissions standards in the applicable county, or the county with the most lenient emissions standards if the vehicle is registered in a county without its own emissions standards. A person who performs a conversion must certify to the vehicle owner that the conversion does not tamper with, circumvent, or otherwise affect the vehicle's on-board diagnostic system, if applicable. A CSA America-certified CNG Fuel System Inspector must also inspect the vehicle every three years, or every 36,000 miles, and after a collision occurring at a speed greater than five miles per hour.

The Utah Division of Air Quality may develop programs to facilitate coordination between government agencies and the private sector regarding emissions and anti-tampering compliance testing, vehicle safety, and potential improvements in the air quality of the state.

(Reference Utah Code 19-1-406)

Public Access to State Compressed Natural Gas (CNG) Fueling Stations

The Utah Department of Administrative Services Division of Fleet Services (Division) may allow a private individual or entity to purchase CNG from a state-operated fueling station if there are no commercial fueling stations that meet the geographical needs of the individual or entity and there is not an emergency that requires the state to reserve CNG for use by state or emergency vehicles. The Division provides information on obtaining a GasCard for fueling as well as state fueling network stations that are available to private individuals and entities. (Reference Utah Code 63A-9-702)

Alternative Fuel Vehicle (AFV) Conversion Promotion

An interlocal entity comprised of members from Utah state and local government, school and transit districts, and the private sector may be created to promote the conversion of AFVs and to encourage the construction, operation, and maintenance of facilities for AFVs. The interlocal entity may contribute funding for an AFV facility so long as the entity uses or benefits from the facility. It must also work with the Utah Public Service Commission (Commission) to explore options and opportunities to facilitate AFV conversions and promote the enhancement and expansion of infrastructure and facilities for AFVs throughout Utah.

An interlocal entity comprised of members from Utah state and local government, school and transit districts, and the private sector may be created to promote the conversion of AFVs and to encourage the construction, operation, and maintenance of facilities for AFVs. The interlocal entity may contribute funding for an AFV facility so long as the entity uses or benefits from the facility. It must also work with the Utah Public Service Commission (Commission) to explore options and opportunities to facilitate AFV conversions and promote the enhancement and expansion of infrastructure and facilities for AFVs throughout Utah.

The Commission submitted a reportto the governor on September 20, 2013, outlining options and opportunities for advancing and promoting measures, such as AFV conversions, to result in cleaner air in Utah.

(Reference Utah Code 54-1-13 and 11-13-224)

Alternative Fuel Vehicle Inspection and Permit

The Utah State Tax Commission (Commission) may require vehicles operating on clean fuels to be inspected for safe operation. In addition, clean fuel vehicles that have a gross vehicle weight rating of more than 26,000 pounds or have more than three axels are required to obtain a special fuel user permit from the Commission. Clean fuels are defined as propane, compressed natural gas, liquefied natural gas, and electricity. (Reference Utah Code 59-13-102, 59-13-303, and 59-13-304)

Low-Speed Vehicle Access to Roadways

Low-speed vehicles are only allowed access to roadways with speeds limits of up to 35 miles per hour, must comply with all federal and state motor vehicle regulations, and are required to display a slow-moving vehicle identification emblem on the rear of the vehicle. Low-speed vehicles are defined as four-wheel electric vehicles that are not golf carts or off-road vehicles, that operate at speeds up to 25 miles per hour, and that can carry up to four passengers. Low-speed vehicles are subject to vehicle taxation requirements, including those related to special fuels, if applicable, and are exempt from emission inspections. (Reference Utah Code 41-6a-102, 41-6a-1508, 59-13-102, and 59-13-201)

State Fleet Idle Reduction Requirement

State of Utah fleet vehicles must turn off their engines when stopped for more than 30 consecutive seconds. Exemptions apply. State agencies must develop a compliance policy for their vehicle fleet.

The Utah Department of Administrative Services (DAS) must implement a six-month pilot project testing the effectiveness of agency anti-idling policies. After the project concludes, DAS must prepare a report detailing the effectiveness of agency idle reduction policies in reducing vehicle idling time and compiling cost savings from the reduction in engine use.

(Reference Executive Order 005, 2012)

Idle Reduction Requirement

Idling of any unattended vehicle is prohibited in Utah. Violators are subject to a penalty of up to $750 and/or up to 90 days imprisonment. Drivers on state roads are also encouraged to avoid excessive idling, which, as a general rule, is defined as more than 10 to 15 seconds for passenger vehicles. Specifically, drivers are encouraged to turn off engines when loading or unloading, delivering, and picking up or dropping off passengers. Drivers of gasoline powered passenger vehicles are encouraged to limit engine warm-up time to 30 seconds and drivers of diesel powered passenger vehicles, buses, and trucks are encouraged to limit engine warm-up to the time the vehicle manufacturer recommends, which is generally less than five minutes. Businesses, schools, airport authorities, and governmental entities are encouraged to post signs to discourage customer idling. (Reference Utah Code 41-6a-202, 41-6a-1403, 76-3-204, and 76-3-301)