Funding allows municipalities to purchase electric vehicles for fleets and install related infrastructure for community use
Investments advance nation-leading goals of Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act
Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Friday announced $2.8 million is now available to help municipalities purchase or lease zero-emission vehicles for fleet use and to install public charging stations. Administered by the State Department of Environmental Conservation and announced during the weeklong celebration of Earth Day 2021, the grants are part of New York's commitment to support municipal efforts to meet the challenges posed by climate change.
"New York is at the leading the way in combating climate change with new, innovative actions that address every sector of the green energy economy," Cuomo said. "One of our keys to success will be making it easier for all New Yorkers to drive electric vehicles, in turn reducing harmful emissions from transportation. This significant investment will support municipalities in their efforts to purchase zero-emission vehicles and adopt clean energy practices while also advancing our nation-leading climate agenda."
Up to $300,000 in rebates are available for municipalities that purchase – or lease for a minimum of 36 months – zero-emission vehicles from eligible dealerships in New York.
Plug-in hybrid, all-electric, or hydrogen fuel cell vehicles are eligible for rebates of up to $7,500 per vehicle, depending on the electric range of the vehicle and provided they were placed into municipal service on or after March 1, 2020.
In addition, up to $2.5 million is available for municipalities to install hydrogen filling station components or electric vehicle chargers, such as fast chargers, in locations that maximize access by the public. A variable local match of zero to 20% of the total project cost is required based on the community's median household income. The maximum grant amount for any location is $250,000 and $500,000 to any one municipality.
Applications for the 2021 Zero-emission Vehicle Rebate Program and the 2021 Zero-emission Vehicle Infrastructure Grant Program are available through the New York State Grants Gateway. The DEC is accepting them on a rolling basis from now through Oct. 29, or until funding is exhausted.
Additional information on both programs is available here.
To further support the state's transition to cleaner transportation options, the fiscal year 2022 enacted budget amends the definition of eligible infrastructure projects under Climate Smart Communities clean vehicle projects to clarify that funds must be used for publicly available sources of charging and to explicitly authorize the use for fast chargers.
A press release stated, “The program further demonstrates New York state's sustained commitment to supporting municipal efforts to meet the economic, social and environmental challenges posed by climate change. DEC has awarded more than $4.8 million for municipalities to purchase electric vehicles and install charging stations since the inception of the program in 2016.
“Local governments are critical partners in meeting the ambitious greenhouse gas emissions reductions required by the state's Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act. The zero-emission vehicles program will be administered by the DEC and funded through the state's Environmental Protection Fund.”
DEC Commissioner Basil Seggos said, "All New Yorkers stand to benefit from our state's transition to a cleaner and more sustainable energy future, and all of our communities can help achieve New York's ambitious climate goals. Today's announcement of funding to help transition municipal fleets and install EV infrastructure will help provide communities across the state with the resources they need to help our state succeed."
Doreen M. Harris, president and CEO of NYSERDA, said, "Providing municipalities across the state with essential resources for growing the number of clean fleet vehicles allows them to take a leadership role in shrinking their carbon footprint by embracing alternatives that foster cleaner communities and create healthier places to live. Today's announcement is further evidence of New York's commitment to rapidly scaling up zero-emissions vehicles along with the associated charging infrastructure as part of a comprehensive clean transportation strategy that is reducing statewide emissions and helping to protect our environment for generations to come.”
Cuomo's nation-leading climate agenda is the most aggressive climate and clean energy initiative in the nation, calling for an orderly and just transition to clean energy that creates jobs and continues fostering a green economy as New York recovers from the COVID-19 pandemic. Enshrined into law through the Climate Leadership and Community Protection Act, New York is on a path to achieving its mandated goal of a zero-emission electricity sector by 2040, including 70% renewable energy generation by 2030, and to reach economywide carbon neutrality.