It wasn’t that long ago when California politicians were promising Elon Musk the moon and the stars if he’d put his huge battery manufacturing plant in the state.
Musk wisely picked Reno instead and California politicians like Senator Ted Gaines had a meltdown.
Musk and Tesla were right of course. Moving their operations out of California was, and still is, the right thing to do.
Even so, Tesla still has a pretty big footprint in the state.
So now the Legislature is going after Musk.
California’s only car manufacturer is the target of a new rule under development by two state agencies that would require it be certified as a “fair and responsible workplace” for its customers to be eligible for taxpayer-backed state electric vehicle rebates.
According to the Sacramento Bee, those rebates are key incentives in Gov. Jerry Brown’s plan to put 5 million electric vehicles on California roads by 2030. They take thousands of dollars off the price of buying a new Tesla car, and unions want lawmakers to withhold them from companies they believe have unfair labor practices.
According to Angie Wei, a lobbyist for the Labor Federation, “The goals of a clean environment and a thriving middle class are inseparable for the Labor movement and we are committed to achieving both.”
That sounds nice. It’s great political cover for legislators.
Soon afterwards, California lawmakers approved the rule changes in a provision they placed in the state budget a year ago, a move designed to give the United Auto Workers and the California Labor Federation a lift in their efforts to unionize Tesla’s Fremont plant.
The rule will be going into effect soon. When it does, expect state regulators to move immediately against Tesla. The attack will be lead by the Labor and Workforce Development Agency and the California Air Resources Board.
There you have it. It’s nothing more than a Tesla shake-down.
It’s payback for Musk and a reward for the UAW and the Labor Federation. It’s how we roll in California Mr. Musk. Why haven’t you learned yet?