03.01.2010 - by Plug In America
Helping to Shape a Model Ordinance

During the last two weeks a team here at Plug In America has reached out to nearly thirty cities and government agencies across the United States and Canada seeking samples of EV-specific model ordinances. Specifically we’ve been searching for codified language that shows a city is serious about welcoming plug-in electric vehicles from an infrastructure perspective.

How have cities looked ahead and started mandating the placement of conduit below new city sidewalks when they are being replaced in commercial districts? How have cities started knocking down barriers to setting up charging stations, such as when condo associations say no?

Plug In America is fortunate to be working with a talented team to help develop a model ordinance. The project is led by the Washington State Dept. of Commerce and the Puget Sound Regional Council – a group of four counties in the Seattle metro area. The project manager is a Seattle-based law firm Gordon Derr, and the other team member is a San Francisco Bay Area consultant Jim Helmer who served as the Director of Transportation for the City of San Jose. The interest of the Puget Sound Regional Council is reflective of a greater state-driven priority to make sure that Washington is well ahead of the curve.

From a big picture perspective, federal and state tax incentives and rebates for consumers and drivers are important. Just as important is what happens at the local level, behind the scenes, so to say. Although local ordinance initiatives may be more in the background, they are crafted to make life easier for the lives of EV drivers and establishments welcoming EV drivers.

Stay tuned to a Plug In America’spring newsletter where I will report more about what we have found.

~Jeanne Trombly

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