The Cash For Clunkers program presented by the House of Representatives a few weeks back has hit a brick wall as the Senate decides to offer up what they say is a better plan.
The program which we talked about here, Cash for Clunkers Approved by House, has been widely praised by many as a way to get old cars off the streets and exchange them with newer, fuel efficient vehicles. However, a few key Senators have their own take on the program and will likely uphold it for a long time.
Sen. Feinstein (DEM) and Sen. Susan Collins (REP) have combined with other to propose a counter bill. Their program only differs slightly from the House version, but just enough to put the bill on hold for now.
The Senate version of the bill would give customers cash vouchers for the purchase of a new vehicle when they trade in their old one. Additionally, the new version would give even more money to those that trade in their clunkers, up to $4,500 in some instances. There is even a provision to give incentives for trading to newer heavy duty work trucks that carry no EPA fuel mileage rating.
According to Sen. Collins, "Federal support for purchasing new cars must also promote greater fuel efficiency as a way to reduce our dependence on foreign oil. The House agreement announced weeks ago does not achieve that goal. Our alternative proposal, which would save up to 38 percent more oil than the House agreement, offers both economic and environmental benefits."
Clearly a battle is brewing between the House and the Senate and those in desperate need of replacing their clunkers will have to wait. The counter bill will be presented to the House, who will likely deny the bill and offer their own compromised version. Eventually both sides may reach an agreement, but for now the consumers are the ones that lose out.