Monday, March 12, 2018

PA Clean Transportation Infrastructure Bill Approved By House Committee

The House Transportation Committee late Monday amended and reported out House Bill 1446 (Quinn-R-Bucks) encouraging infrastructure for electric and natural gas fueled vehicles (sponsor summary).
Under House Bill 1446, Pennsylvania will:
-- Establish a state goal of expanding our electric transportation usage by at least 50 percent over baseline forecasts by 2030;
-- Direct the development of regional transportation plans so that Pennsylvanians will be able to live, work and play while going electric;
-- Require electric utilities to submit infrastructure investment proposals based on the regional frameworks that help cost-effectively build out backbone charging infrastructure that meets their local needs;
-- Complete statewide interstate and Turnpike fast electric and natural gas refueling networks; and
-- Assess opportunities to increase the deployment of natural gas vehicles to support fleets and other high-value uses.
“Electric-powered cars are becoming more affordable for both business and personal use,” said Rep. Marguerite Quinn (R-Bucks), prime sponsor of the bill. “However, people are hesitant to purchase alternative fueled cars because of the availability of charging and refueling stations. My legislation seeks to improve that, and to begin to enable the transition for long distance travel with alternative fueled vehicles.
“Alternative fuel vehicles provide a great opportunity to help our economy and our environment at the same time,” Rep. Quinn added. “Through good planning and regional collaboration, we can make Pennsylvania a leader in adopting these exciting technologies.”
The bill was amended to, among other changes, require charging stations funded by the legislation to be open to the public, revised review procedures related to the Public Utility Commission and added hydrogen as an alternative fuel included in the program.
The Committee held a hearing on the legislation on November 14.  The PA Environmental Council offered its support for the legislation in a letter to the prime sponsor last July.
Rep. John Taylor (R-Philadelphia) serves as Majority Chair of the Committee and can be contacted by sending email to: Rep. William Keller (D-Philadelphia) serves as Minority Chair and can be contacted by sending email to:
(Photo: Electric vehicle charging station behind Weis Markets, Union Deposit Road in Harrisburg.)
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