Taxpayers could pay a terrible price over this wrong move with electric vehicles

May 10, 2024

The electric vehicle revolution is being propped up with taxpayer money.

But the tragic consequences of this reckless decision are now being felt.

And taxpayers could pay a terrible price over this wrong move with electric vehicles.

Rivian was supposed to be the next electric vehicle darling

Electric vehicle (EV) manufacturer Rivian is one of the upstarts that is chasing market leader Tesla.

The California-based company’s electric trucks and SUVs helped it become a Silicon Valley darling when it achieved unicorn status as a privately held company worth more than $1 billion before it went public.

With demand for electric vehicles collapsing, Rivian has been hemorrhaging money.

The company underwent massive layoffs to cut costs.

Its stock price also plummeted from more than $128 a share in November 2021 to hovering around $10.

Rivian had announced plans to build a manufacturing facility in Georgia for its next-generation electric vehicles in December of 2021.

In early March, the company announced that it was stopping construction on the facility.

Now concerns are growing that Georgia taxpayers could be stuck with the bill for Rivian’s proposed manufacturing facility.

Taxpayers could pay the price for electric vehicle blunder

Georgia taxpayers could be stuck holding the bag if the Rivian manufacturing facility doesn’t get completed.

Local governments gave the electric vehicle maker a $1.5 billion taxpayer-funded incentive package to lure the company to Georgia.

The plant was expected to create 7,500 jobs.

Rivian and the local governments around the plant claim that the facility will eventually get built.

“Rivian has restated its commitment to Georgia, and the State and JDA are in steady communication with Rivian regarding its manufacturing plans at Stanton Springs North,” the Georgia Department of Economic Development and Joint Development Authority of Jasper, Morgan, Newton, and Walton counties told the Daily Caller News Foundation.

But the project has attracted criticism for its lavish taxpayer subsidies to a company that’s never turned a profit.

The Center for Economic Accountability (CEA) called the Georgia Rivian facility the “Worst Economic Development Deal of the Year” in 2022 because it wasn’t clear that the project would be a benefit to the state.

“The state had no way of knowing how good an investment it was when it made the deal because it never bothered to do even the most basic analysis to find out,” CEA President John Mozena said. “The thing that stood out about Georgia’s deal with Rivian that made us select it as the Worst Economic Development Deal of the Year for 2022 was the way the agencies involved admitted under oath that they had done essentially no due diligence on the company they were investing taxpayers’ dollars in.”

The demand for electric vehicles is collapsing, and major automakers like Ford have canceled projects or scaled back their plans.

State Senator Randy Robertson (R-GA) questioned if Rivian’s plant would ever be finished.

“If they come back to Georgia and start making good on their promises, I’ll be the one surprised,” Robertson said.

Mozena accused Georgia politicians of making a risky bet on Rivian in order to tout job creation in an Election Year.

“Any private investment advisor or money manager in the real world would find themselves fired, sued, and maybe even in jail for this kind of malpractice, but government agencies don’t hold themselves to the kind of standards that they impose on us lesser mortals,” Mozena said.

Georgia taxpayers could pay a steep price for their politicians falling for the electric vehicle hype.

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