Act to Prohibit State Procurement of Electric Vehicles with Forced Labor Components
AN ACT relating to government procurement of electric vehicles; prohibiting government contracts procuring electric vehicles that may have been made through forced labor; setting remedies and penalties for manufacturers; and providing an effective date.
SECTION 1. Legislative Findings
The State of [name of state] finds that:
- many electric vehicles are being made with components created through the use of forced labor, including materials mined by Uyghurs and other Muslim minorities in China’s Xinjiang region;
- concerns about the use of forced labor to create these components and materials prompted the federal government to pass the Uyghur Forced Labor Prevention Act (UFLPA) with overwhelming bipartisan support;
- under the UFLPA, there is a rebuttable presumption that any product manufactured in whole or in part in the Xinjiang Uyghur Autonomous Region was produced by forced labor;
- the federal government recently restricted the application of its newly created tax credits for electric vehicles, so that “[b]beginning in 2024, an eligible clean vehicle may not contain any battery components that are manufactured by a foreign entity of concern and beginning in 2025 an eligible clean vehicle may not contain any critical minerals that were extracted, processed, or recycled by a foreign entity of concern”;
- the federal government recently proposed a regulation for another act that any company subject to China’s jurisdiction will be defined as a “foreign entity of concern,” which would prevent federal tax credits from supporting sales of electric vehicles made with battery components from Chinese entities;
- in addition, many electric vehicles also are being made with components created through the use of oppressive child labor, most notably, through cobalt ore mined in dangerous conditions by thousands of young children in the Democratic Republic of the Congo and sent to China for use in manufacturing lithium-ion batteries;
- the federal government recently concluded that “downstream products containing lithium-ion batteries may be produced with an input produced with child labor, such as electric cars;”
- the use of forced labor is repugnant and deplorable, violates basic human rights, constitutes unacceptable discrimination, and damages free and fair competition; and
- state governments should take steps to ensure that taxpayer dollars are not being used to pay for electric vehicles that may have been partially manufactured through forced labor.
SECTION 2. Definitions
(A) “Forced labor” means all work or service that is (i) obtained by force, fraud, or coercion, including by threat of serious harm to, or physical restraint against, any person; by means of any scheme, plan, or pattern intended to cause the person to believe that if the person did not perform such labor or services, the person or another person would suffer serious harm or physical restraint; or by means of the abuse or threatened abuse of law or the legal process; (ii) imposed on the basis of a protected characteristic; (iii) not offered or provided voluntarily by the worker; or (iv) produced through oppressive child labor.
(B) “Electric vehicle” means a motor vehicle which is propelled to a significant extent by an electric motor which draws electricity from a battery which is capable of being recharged from an external source of electricity.
(C) “Governmental entity” means a state agency or political subdivision of the state, including but not limited to any county, city [list all other subdivisions possible in the state (village, borough, school district, water district, etc.)], or any school, college, university, administration, authority, or other enterprise operated by the state or any political subdivision of the state.
(D) “Oppressive child labor” means a condition of employment under which any person under the age of fourteen years is employed in an occupation hazardous for the employment of children, such as manufacturing or mining.
(E) “Protected characteristic” means any characteristic protected by [state civil rights law].
SECTION 3. Provision Required in Public Contract
No governmental entity may enter into a contract for the procurement of electric vehicles, or any component of an electric vehicle, unless the governmental entity is provided a sworn certification from the manufacturer that (i) consents to personal jurisdiction by the state over the manufacturer; and (ii) certifies that no entity involved in the production of the electric vehicle or component for sale, including the production of any constituent part, or the mining or other sourcing of any materials, used forced labor or oppressive child labor in its activities.
SECTION 4. Remedies and Enforcement
(A) In addition to any other remedies available at law or equity, if the manufacturer or seller provide false or misleading information under Subsection 3, then a civil penalty shall be imposed against the manufacturer or seller for the greater of $10,000 per false or misleading statement, or one-half of the total price paid by the governmental entity for the vehicles or components.
(B) Any government entity that knowingly violates SECTION 3 shall return to the state the greater of $10,000 per false or misleading statement, or the total price paid by the governmental entity for the vehicles or components.
(C) Any employee that knowingly violates SECTION 3 shall personally pay a fine of $5,000 to the school library fund.
(D) Each member voting in the affirmative of any board that authorizes a purchase that violates SECTION 3 shall personally pay a $5,000 fine to the school library fund.
(E) Any citizen within the district of any government entity that violates this statute has standing to bring enforcement of this statute.
SECTION 5. Severability
Each section, paragraph, and portion of each paragraph of this Act is severable. If one or more sections, paragraphs, or portions of one or more paragraphs of this Act are held invalid on their face or as applied to particular facts, then the remaining portions and applications of the Act shall be given full effect to the greatest extent practicable.
SECTION 6. Applicability and Effective Date
This Act applies to all electric vehicle procurement contracts entered into, amended, or renewed after [DATE].