Lawmakers introduce electric vehicle incentive bill
Legislation introduced in the state House of Representatives this week would give utilities incentives to build electric vehicle (EV) charging infrastructure.
HB 1853 is sponsored by state Rep. Chad Magendanz, R-Issaquah. Rep. Dick Muri, R-Steilacoom, is one of the co-sponsors. Magendanz and Muri belong to the Legislature's bipartisan Electric Vehicle Caucus, comprised of lawmakers interested in promoting EV usage.
Modeled after existing state financial incentives for energy-efficiency programs, the bill would allow the same incentive rate of return for utilities that provide and install EV charging stations.
Magendanz said the goal of the bill is to reduce barriers to EV purchases by making charging stations more available, particularly for multi-family dwellings such as apartments and condominiums in urban and suburban areas.
“With this policy in place, a ratepayer could simply request a charging station, and the power company would handle the installation and recover the depreciated cost through the new rate structure,” said Magendanz. “Cable and wireless providers already do essentially the same thing to offset equipment and installation costs, and there are considerable economic savings due to efficiencies of scale.”
Muri noted that more widespread EV usage would reduce reliance on foreign oil.
“Many of us drive electric vehicles because we're in favor of greater energy independence,” said Muri. “When I pay my electricity bill for example, I don't send one dime to OPEC. All of my transportation dollars stay right here in Washington.”
HB 1853 is scheduled for a public hearing before the House Technology and Economic Development Committee on Feb. 10.
###Washington State House Republican Communications