Hermosa Beach stepped into the green spotlight again when Assemblyman Al Muratsuchi decided to select the eco-friendly city to introduce his bill that would help Californians save money when purchasing alternative fuel vehicles.

Muratsuchi, D-Torrance, hosted a press conference today in the parking lot of Hermosa Beach’s City Hall to introduce Assembly Bill 1077 that would incentivize the purchase of alternative fuel vehicles. In front of roughly three dozen people and several alternative fuel vehicles, he explained that his bill would bring fairness to the vehicle license fees and state taxes when purchasing an alternative fuel vehicle, and offer financial incentives to the buyer.

He said under his bill, when a consumer purchases an alternative fuel vehicle, the license fee and portions of the state sales tax would be calculated based on the purchase price of the vehicle after deducting the federal tax credit and the state tax rebate. Muratsuchi said that would lower the upfront and long-term costs of purchasing an alternative fuel vehicle and make the fees and taxes more comparable to a conventionally fueled vehicle.

“I introduced this to help California to continue as a clean vehicle leader,” Muratsuchi said. “It is time we help Californians go green … our state is facing a great challenge to reduce both air pollution and greenhouse gas emissions within our transportation sector … AB 1077 is an incentive to encourage people to help California reduce these pollutants.”

Muratsuchi, who represents the 66th Assembly District that includes most of the South Bay, chose Hermosa Beach as the location for his press conference because the city has been an environmental leader and has four electric-vehicle charging stations in town, two outside City Hall where Muratsuchi spoke.

“I’m very proud to be representing Hermosa Beach,” Muratsuchi said. “Hermosa Beach is one of the greenest cities in not only the South Bay but California … Hermosa Beach is showing how we can protect the earth.”

Hermosa Beach Mayor Kit Bobko and representatives from California Electric Transportation Coalition and Plug In America also spoke to help push for the passage of the proposed bill. Bobko said the city is honored that Muratsuchi selected Hermosa Beach as the venue for his press conference to introduce AB 1077.

“We’re very proud of our green policies,” Bobko said. “This is good for environmental policy and for business … (Hermosa Beach is) one of the few places you can charge and visit businesses.”

Tim Goodrich of Plug In America said this bill is a key step toward the country pulling away from foreign oil and encourages supporters to help “get it passed (and) get cleaner air.”

California Electric Transportation Coalition chair Ed Kjaer said he’s extremely pleased to be the lead sponsor of Muratsuchi’s bill and said it’s vital to get AB 1077 passed because it will only impact the state in positive ways.

“It’s an important step and we look forward to this making a difference in California,” Kjaer said.

Muratsuchi said he not only has strong support from Plug in American, CETC and cities like Hermosa Beach, but also Honda, General Motors, Nissan, the American Lung Association, Southern California Edison, NRDC and many others. He said if passed, the bill would take effect Jan. 1, 2014.