Despite Arizona being one of four states in the hunt for Tesla’s multi-billion dollar Gigafactory, the Arizona Legislature killed a bill Friday that would have allowed the automaker to sell its electric cars directly to customers.
Approval of the bill would have lifted the prohibition of auto manufacturers to sell directly to customers, something car dealers mightily oppose.
The move is shocking considering Arizona is vying for the $5 billion dollar lithium-ion battery Gigafactory along with Texas, Nevada and New Mexico. The factory could bring as many as 6,500 jobs to whichever state gets it, not to mention boost its economy significantly.
House Bill 2123 is not even going to be considered by the Senate, State Sen. John McComish (R-Ahwatukee) said. It would be Senate President Andy Bigg’s (R-Gilbert) choice to bring it up, but McComish – a Tesla fan – told reporters Friday the bill was all but dead, a sentiment echoed by Arizona Automobile President Bobbi Sparrow.
The 2014 Arizona Legislative session is supposed to end next week.
This is bad news for Arizona as bullish Texas Governor Rick Perry this week voiced support for the direct sales model, which likely moved Texas up to the front of the line in this electric car chess game.
Your move, Nevada or New Mexico.