June 28, 2007
Use Biodiesel, Get Busted For Tax Evasion.
Bob Teixeira, a Charlotte guitar teacher, took a stand against U.S. dependence on foreign oil last fall and spent $1,200 to convert his 1981 diesel Mercedes to run on vegetable oil. He buys soybean oil in 5-gallon jugs at Costco, which costs him about a third more than diesel.
Despite his good intentions, the state fined Teixeira $1,000 for not paying motor fuel taxes. North Carolina officials also told him that to legally use veggie oil here he'd have to first post a $2,500 bond.
Such penalties have also been levied against other North Carolina drivers whose vehicles were powered by alternative fuels.